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                           | pdf edition | Saturday January 26 2013                                                       Sport
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Manchester City’s Pablo Zabaleta ends
Stoke’s FA Cup resistance
A late goal from a defender gave a Manchester City side full of
attacking talent a 1-0 win at Stoke in the FA Cup fourth round
Page 2

Victoria Azarenka retains Australian Open
title with victory over Li Na
Victoria Azarenka retained her Australian Open title and world No1
ranking with a tense 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory over China’s Li Na Page 3

‘Tired’ Andy Murray to face Novak
Djokovic in Australian Open final
Andy Murray defeated Roger Federer in a fractious five-set epic
and now faces Novak Djokovic in the final of the Australian Open
Page 4

Lance Armstrong                              Horse racing tips:                           Chara and Rask                  Magnus Carlsen
‘will co-operate’ with                       Sunday 27 January                            star as Bruins top              closes on record 2900
cycling’s anti-doping                        Page 6                                       Islanders to keep on            rating at Wijk aan Zee
fight Page 5                                                                              rolling Page 7                  tournament Page 8
                                             Dwyane Wade helps
Last-hole eagle helps                        fire up Heat to fourth                       George Ford guides              Andy Murray left
Chris Wood take first                        consecutive NBA win                          England Saxons to               drained but should
tour title at Qatar                          Page 6                                       comeback win against            have enough in tank
Masters Page 5                                                                            Ireland A Page 8                to win final Page 9 © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                                         
Registered in England and Wales. No. 908396. Registered office: PO Box 68164, Kings Place, 90 York Way, London, N1P 2AP
Page  G24 Sport                                                                  Saturday January 26 2013              16:31 GMT

                                                                     down the tunnel; without a replacement centre-half on the
                                                                     bench, they had to make do with Gaël Clichy. It should have
Manchester City’s Pablo Zabaleta ends                                been Stoke doing the reorganising at the start of the second half
Stoke’s FA Cup resistance                                            when Glenn Whelan was incredibly lucky to stay on the field
                                                                     after effectively stamping on Javi García’s ankle.
Paul Wilson at the Britannia Stadium                                     The only explanation for Howard Webb’s decision not even
                                                                     to caution the player must have been that he had not have seen
                                                                     the incident properly. Those with a replay facility could see that
                                                                     Whelan jumped in two-footed with studs raised in exactly the
                                                                     manner that is now supposed to be outlawed.
                                                                         Though in evident pain, García was not seriously injured
                                                                     and was able to continue, yet Whelan’s unpunished tackle
                                                                     was much more of a shocker than the recent one involving
                                                                     Kompany which hurt no one and led to the Manchester City
                                                                     captain being dismissed. Kompany’s ban was overturned
                                                                     on appeal and Whelan may now find himself subject to the
                                                                     opposite process. Because the referee missed the incident and
                                                                     took no action, the FA will be able to charge the player should it
                                                                     so wish. Webb hardly helped himself a few minutes later when
                                                                     he booked Ryan Shotton for a challenge on Tevez that was
Pablo Zabaleta scores the winning goal for Manchester City
                                                                     clearly accidental.
against Stoke City in the FA Cup tie at the Britannia stadium.
                                                                         Mancini sent on Sergio Agüero for the last half-hour in a bold
Photograph: Alex Morton/Action Images
                                                                     attempt to make something happen up front, yet even with a
The relief was tangible when Pablo Zabaleta finally put              four-man attack the best they managed before Zabaleta’s late
Manchester City through to the FA Cup fifth round with five          winner was a hopeful shot from a narrow angle by Dzeko that
minutes remaining.                                                   flashed across the face of Sorensen’s goal.
   Not even Stoke City fans would have fancied watching                  Pulis responded by sending on Peter Crouch, who put a
another 90 minutes of this, and a replay was the last thing          header over the bar from Shotton’s cross 10 minutes from the
Roberto Mancini would have wanted.                                   end. Incongruous as it was that a full-back should break the
   Although a scoreless draw was only narrowly averted the           deadlock with all the attacking talent City had on the pitch,
game always seemed likely to produce a goal, and probably for        Silva, Agüero and Dzeko were all crucially involved in the
Manchester City too, yet somewhere along the line Mancini’s          buildup.
players seem to have lost their cup killer instinct. They were
manifestly superior here, without ever managing to overwork
Thomas Sorensen in the Stoke goal. Even Zabaleta’s winner
owed something to luck. There was nothing wrong with the
visitors’ measured approach work, but Edin Dzeko’s touch was
not quite the one he wanted, it allowed the ball to roll free for
the Argentinian to stab home.
   David Silva striking an upright with an exquisite left-foot

curler from the angle of the area was the highlight of an oddly
scrappy first half. As Manchester City kept demonstrating, they
had the passing ability to cut Stoke into pieces, yet lacked the
cohesion in front of goal to make it count. Carlos Tevez and
Edin Dzeko both played well too often misunderstood each
other’s intentions, Silva’s approach play was a joy to watch
but the final product was missing, and on the rare occasions           From Beirut to Big Brother,
the visitors did create an opening for a shot there was always a       Murdoch to Millionaire,
Stoke body in the way, usually the tireless Ryan Shawcross.
   The Stoke captain had the ball in the Manchester City net           discuss the hot topics in the
midway through the first half, on one of the few occasions             media on not one, but two blogs
the home side made it that far upfield, but was correctly ruled
offside after collecting Robert Huth’s hopeful attempt following
                                                                       Organ Grinder and Greenslade
a corner and turning it into a shot of his own. It was not exactly
cup football to warm the cockles on a day when most of the
Potteries lay under snow, though at least the visiting fans
standing (by choice) behind one of the goal were able to amuse
themselves at the expense of the Stoke manager’s dress sense.
“He’s Tony Pulis,” the first-half chant went, “he wears the club
   City had to reorganise themselves after half an hour when
Vincent Kompany went over on an ankle and took himself off © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                             
Page 3 G24 Sport                                                                Saturday January 26 2013                16:31 GMT

                                                                   script. Azarenka was better than Li, by a decent bit at the end.
                                                                   She served efficiently, at 78% on her first effort, to a poor 48%
Victoria Azarenka retains Australian                               return for Li, whose unforced error count was catastrophic in
Open title with victory over Li Na                                 the end: 57, with 30 on her backhand as her wrists failed to roll
                                                                   tough enough through the shot.
• Belarusian wins 4-6, 6-4, 6-3                                        Azarenka sobbed uncontrollably into her towel at the
• Li injured twice during match                                    end, wobbled over to her coach, Samuel Sumyk, who said:
                                                                   “You’re a champion”, a more decorous acclamation than that
Kevin Mitchell at Melbourne Park                                   of Redfoo. He grew up in posh Pacific Palisades in Los Angeles
                                                                   but comes from no-nonsense stock, the son of Tamla Motown
                                                                   founder, Berry Gordy Jnr. Vika has interesting potential in-
                                                                   laws, as Gordy, a would-be boxer until he found music easier,
                                                                   is distantly related to Jimmy Carter, through the former US
                                                                   president’s mother, Bessie Lillian Gordy. Had he been court-
                                                                   side, he could have serenaded her through her lachrymose
                                                                   celebrations with one of his great hits, Lonely Teardrops.
                                                                       And she was all alone here, apart from those close friends. It
                                                                   was an unseemly spectacle, seeing the crowd cheer Azarenka’s
                                                                   every mistake. Yes, as she admitted, “it was my bad” that she
                                                                   had taken a spectacularly ill-judged medical timeout against
                                                                   Stephens. But that was not good enough. “I was expecting way
                                                                   worse – but I thought Li Na played some great tennis,” she said.
Victoria Azarenka has now won two grand slam titles, both at           Azarenka fought so hard to survive in the first set, saving
the Australian Open. Photograph: Dennis Sabangan/EPA               four set points, before throwing it away with a double fault, and
                                                                   the expulsion of joy in the arena was a communal snarl in her
The sentiment rolling over the Rod Laver Arena was so with Li
                                                                   direction. It must have taken all her fortitude to ignore it – and
Na it threatened to drown the champion, Victoria Azarenka,
                                                                   she is not known for that quality.
in righteousness. The crowd, the American and Australian TV
                                                                       To that point, it was a final of emotion and ill-discipline, with
networks – the ballkids too probably – everyone wanted the
                                                                   seven service breaks in the first 10 games. Another followed at
charming Chinese player to win the Australian Open, to beat
                                                                   the start of the second, giving Azarenka rare breathing space
the vilain du jour who had hustled the sweet American teenage
                                                                   under intense pressure.
prodigy Sloane Stephens out of the semi-finals with her blatant
                                                                       She fought against her instincts to ignore the welter of
                                                                   distractions that followed. Li played her part, smiling through
    Yet there was something heroic about Azarenka’s
                                                                   serial bouts of adversity. In between there was some tennis,
achievement in retaining the title she won last year by slaying
                                                                   some of it not bad.
another golden girl, Maria Sharapova. This was a counter-
intuitive twist that defied the power of the crowd, and one
irreverently embroidered by her boyfriend, the wildly-coiffed
American singer, Redfoo, who clutched the hand she reached
up to him from the court in victory and uttered the heartfelt
quote of the tournament: “I love you, baby – you’re fucking
    The microphones picked it up, and there was duly an
apology to viewers. You are not supposed to use language

like that here, not in tennis, not on Australia Day, even when
wrecking a fairytale. That Roger Federer had used similar
language the previous night in his match with Andy Murray did
not get much of an airing.
    If the night had gone to script, Azarenka, although No1
in the world, would not have beaten the sixth seed 4-6, 6-4,
6-3 in two hours and 40 minutes of flawed, eventful tennis.          Compare and buy
The storyboard would have had Li getting up from a spill that
wrenched her left ankle to blast the wicked witch off the court.     Use our free independent
It would then have her return from the quite preposterous            comparison services to switch
Australia Day 10-minute fireworks break, tumble on the
ankle again, bang her head and hang on in the third set for a        suppliers and save money on
heartwarming win.                                                    all your household bills.
    Tennis in China would then have roared ahead of all the
other sports scrambling for the biggest untapped audience in
the world and they would make a movie of her life to go with         compareandbuy
the giant posters that already dot Shanghai and Beijing.
    But this was real. And it was better than the pre-written © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                             
Page  G24 Sport                                                                  Saturday January 26 2013                16:31 GMT

                                                                     not relevant what he said. It doesn’t really matter. It didn’t
                                                                     rattle me, but he definitely raised his level.”
‘Tired’ Andy Murray to face Novak                                        Federer said: “We just looked at each other one time. That’s
Djokovic in Australian Open final                                    OK, I think, in a [four-hour] match. We were just checking each
                                                                     other out for a bit. That wasn’t a big deal for me. I hope not for
• ‘It was a long, long match against Roger.                          him.”
I’m tired’ – Murray                                                      The suggestion that he might be slipping from the upper
                                                                     echelons, alongside Murray, Djokovic and the absent Rafael
• ‘I don’t want to waste any energy – I’ll
                                                                     Nadal, was batted away neatly. “Nothing has changed. I’ve
need it for Novak’                                                   played these guys, what, 60 times, the three guys around me
Kevin Mitchell at Melbourne Park                                     in the rankings. So we know each other really well. We play
                                                                     each other very close very often. We keep on trading wins and
                                                                         Murray’s coach, Ivan Lendl, said: “Playing Roger is never
                                                                     easy and he stepped it up when he had to. Andy was fortunately
                                                                     able to produce when he had to as well. What pleased me most?
                                                                     Winning the last point.
                                                                         “He did well to come back in the fifth set after twice leading
                                                                     but that is what he trained for. He trained for it physically and
                                                                     he trained for it mentally. He tried to focus on every point in
                                                                     practice, then it is easier in the matches that way. That is what
                                                                     you have got to do.”
                                                                         Federer spoke earlier in the tournament about the refreshing
                                                                     sense of fair play on court and respect in the locker room that
                                                                     characterises the sport, but there was a definite edge to this
Andy Murray beat Roger Federer in five sets and now
                                                                     match. Both seemed to thrive on it. Asked if he would like
faces Novak Djokovic in the final of the Australian Open.
                                                                     tennis to be more confrontational, Murray, a big boxing fan,
Photograph: Chen Xiaowei/Xinhua Press/Corbis
                                                                     smiled and said: “No. I know you guys would. Tennis is doing
It took Andy Murray four hours to beat Roger Federer for             just fine the way it is.”
the first time in a grand slam match, and, looking unusually             And it is. The standard here has been phenomenally high
dispirited afterwards, he admitted he would need a decent rest       again and Djokovic drew universal praise for his blistering
to recover from the fractious finish to his semi-final if he is to   performance in putting David Ferrer away in three sets in the
take the Australian Open title away from Novak Djokovic on           first semi-final on Thursday night. He has the benefit of an
Sunday.                                                              extra day’s rest but Murray, for whom fitness and recovery have
     Murray is bidding to become the first player since Lew Hoad     become an exact science, said he was confident he would be
in 1956 to win a second slam title immediately after his first,      ready for the challenge.
which he secured against Djokovic on that memorable night                “You never know how you’re going to feel the next day,” he
four months ago in New York. But he had little time for history      admitted. “I’m sure I’ll be tired in the morning, and stiff and
after surviving a brutal physical and mental examination by          sore, so I need to make sure I sleep as long as possible, do all of
Federer on Friday night.                                             the recovery stuff. I’ll hit very little beforehand, just try my best
     An ugly confrontation towards the end of their see-sawing       to be in the best possible condition for Sunday.
five-setter clearly ruined the Scot’s mood, even on Burns Night.         “Realistically, I’m probably not going to feel perfect because
Neither player, though, would break the sport’s protocol of          of how the match went tonight, but it’s not to say I can’t recover
niceness later, and Murray deflected questions about the angry       well enough to play my best tennis.”
exchange of words and glances when he failed to serve out the
match at 6-5 in the fourth set.
     Just before he had passed Federer with a perfect forehand,

and the Swiss mouthed something inaudible (understood to
be “Fucking stop” with the BBC moved to apologise for the
language during their broadcast), then Murray made an ugly
face at him.
     The Swiss upped his level considerably, broke, held
and won the tie-break to force a fifth set. The mood for the
                                                                       The Guardian digital edition
remainder of the match was uglier than in any of their previous        Read the Guardian on the web
19 encounters. Murray won 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-2, a fair      exactly the way it was printed.
reflection of the rhythm of the struggle.                              With award-winning Guardian
     “It was a long, long match,” Murray said. “It’s a very late
finish. I’m tired. I don’t want to be wasting any energy, because
                                                                       photography accessible from
I’ll need all of it if I want to win against Novak on Sunday.          anywhere in the world.
     “Stuff like that happens daily in tennis matches,” he added,
refusing to confirm what Federer had said to him. “It was very,
very mild in comparison to what happens in other sports. It’s © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                               
Page  G24 Sport                                                                 Saturday January 26 2013               16:31 GMT

                                                                       Bock’s letter does not mention the ban, though Armstrong’s
                                                                    full cooperation could lead to a reduction, perhaps to eight
Lance Armstrong ‘will co-operate’ with                              years, which would allow Armstrong to compete in 2020, when
cycling’s anti-doping fight                                         he will be 49.

• Lawyer says Lance Armstrong will help
but authorities should lead                                         Last-hole eagle helps Chris Wood take
• USADA still impatient with rider’s delay in                       first tour title at Qatar Masters
appearing under oath
Associated Press
                                                                    • 25-year-old from Bristol ends trophy
                                                                    • ‘I felt I was due a win for a couple of years,’
                                                                    says Wood
                                                                    Press Association

Lance Armstrong has been banned for life, but has indicated
he would like to compete again. Photograph: Franck Fife/AFP/
Getty Images
Lance Armstrong will co-operate with efforts to “clean up
cycling”, a lawyer for the disgraced rider has told the US Anti-    England’s Chris Wood celebrates his eagle putt on the 18th
Doping Agency, though he added that the sport’s governing           green to win the Qatar Masters in Doha. Photograph: Ross
body and world anti-doping officials should take the lead.          Kinnaird/Getty Images
    In letters sent this week between attorneys for Armstrong
                                                                    England’s gentle giant Chris Wood finally grabbed his first
and USADA, and obtained by the Associated Press, the USADA
                                                                    European Tour title today – and did it in brilliant fashion with a
attorney William Bock requested that Armstrong testify under
                                                                    last-hole eagle at the Qatar Masters in Doha.
oath by 6 February, but the cyclist’s attorney, Tim Herman,
                                                                        After no fewer than 19 top-10 finishes, the 25-year-old from
responded that Armstrong cannot accommodate that schedule.
                                                                    Bristol was in danger of missing out again when a nervy start
    Last week Armstrong admitted taking performance-
                                                                    turned a three-stroke overnight lead into a two-shot deficit
enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France
                                                                    before the turn.
seven times.
                                                                        Wood battled back, but came to the par-five last one behind
    Herman’s letter said Armstrong intends to appear before
                                                                    Sergio García and the South African George Coetzee. The tee
the International Cycling Union’s planned “truth and
                                                                    had been moved forward over 60 yards, and after a booming
reconciliation” commission. Herman says the cycling union and
                                                                    drive the 6ft 5in golfer – best remembered for coming fifth in
the Wada should take the lead in cleaning up the sport.
                                                                    the 2008 Open as an amateur and then third at
    “As you have candidly confirmed, USADA has no authority to
                                                                    Turnberry a year later – hit a 202-yard five-iron
investigate, prosecute or otherwise involve itself with the other
                                                                    over the water and straight at the flag.
95% of cycling competitors. Thus, in order to achieve the goal
                                                                        It came up just short, but he was celebrating the 12-foot putt
of ‘cleaning up cycling,’ it must be Wada and the UCI who have
                                                                    going in before it dropped and two fist-pumps showed what it
overall authority to do so.”
    The letter from USADA also confirms a 14 December meeting
                                                                        “I knew it was going to be hard no matter how I played,”
in Denver between Bock, the USADA chief executive Travis
                                                                    Wood said after collecting a first prize of just under £260,000.
Tygart, Herman and Armstrong.
                                                                    “Winning on the European Tour is not easy.”
    “Mr Armstrong has already been provided well over a
                                                                        His first professional success came at the Thailand Open last
month since our meeting in December to consider whether he
                                                                    August, but he also lost the 2010 BMW PGA Championship with
is going to be part of our ongoing efforts to clean up the sport
                                                                    a closing 77 and the 2011 Majorca Open with a 76 after leading by
of cycling,” Tygart said in a statement. “He has been given a
deadline of 6 February to determine whether he plans to come
                                                                        “It feels good. Blimey, I’ve seen a few mates picking up
in and be part of the solution. Either way, USADA is moving
                                                                    trophies and I’ve been waiting patiently for my time,” he said.
forward with our investigation on behalf of clean athletes.”
                                                                    “I felt like I was due to win for a couple of years, but now there’s
    Armstrong has been banned for life and, in his interview
                                                                    an enormous weight off my shoulders and I feel I can go on and
with Oprah Winfrey last week, said he would like to compete
                                                                    win more.” As for the eagle, Wood added: “Nice way to finish!”
again. © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                             
Page 6 G24 Sport                                                                    Saturday January 26 2013              16:31 GMT

    His 69 gave him an 18-under-par total of 270 and should take
him from 142nd in the world into the top 64, who will contest
the Accenture Match Play in Arizona next month, although the
                                                                       Dwyane Wade helps fire up Heat to
cut-off is not for another two weeks.                                  fourth consecutive NBA win
    Coetzee was left as the nearly man once more – this was his
21st top-10 finish on the circuit – despite a superb 65 containing     Shooting guard notches up 29 points
an eagle and six birdies. The last of those came courtesy of a         against Detroit Pistons, while Celtics lose to
pitch to five feet on the 18th. The putt took him one in front,
                                                                       Atlanta Hawks in double overtime
but García birdied the final two holes for a 66 and they then sat
and waited to see what Wood could produce.                             Associated Press in Miami
    It was a remarkable effort given a start in which he missed
a three-foot birdie chance on the second – he blamed a spike
mark for that – and then had a double bogey on the 223-yard
third after he fired his tee shot wide and then hit the rock face in
front of him. Putts of 35 and 18 feet at the eighth and ninth were
just the boost he needed, however, and a 15-footer on the 14th
kept him in touch as the pressure built.
    García would have gone back into the game’s top 10 for the
first time in over three years if he had won, but he will take a lot
of positives from his first tournament of the year. Sweden’s Alex
Noren and England’s Steve Webster tied for fourth, while Justin
Rose’s 68 for joint 16th kept him at fourth in the world ahead of
Louis Oosthuizen.

                                                                       Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade goes up for a shot against
                                                                       Detroit Pistons forward Jason Maxiell. Photograph: Wilfredo
Horse racing tips: Sunday 27 January                                   Lee/AP
                                                                       Dwyane Wade scored 29 points and sparked a pivotal run to
The five-year-old Karazhan has fine                                    help the Miami Heat earn their fourth victory in a row Friday by
prospects in the 3.15 on Wolverhampton’s                               beating the Detroit Pistons 110-88.
‘bumper’ card                                                              After falling behind by nine points, the Heat outscored
                                                                       Detroit 26-4 during a seven-minute stretch in the second
Chris Cook
                                                                       quarter to take a 60-47 lead. Wade scored 15 points during the
                                                                           LeBron James had 23 points, seven rebounds and seven
                                                                       assists for the Heat, who shot 56 percent.
                                                                           Miami, last in the NBA in rebounds, also won the battle of
                                                                       the boards, 36-35.
                                                                           Greg Monroe scored 31 points for the Pistons, who never got
                                                                       close in the second half.
                                                                           Wade’s most acrobatic basket was a fallaway jumper when
                                                                       he was fouled. He took a tumble and slid across the floor on his
                                                                       backside as the ball swished through the net.
                                                                           On three successive possessions late in the first half, James
                                                                       and Wade took turns feeding each other.
                                                                           First, James threw an alley-oop pass to Wade for an easy
David Bass is due to partner Karazhan for the Nicky Henderson          layup.
stable at Worlverhampton. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty                 The Heat then forced a turnover to start a fast break that
Images                                                                 ended with Wade’s alley-oop pass to James for a dunk.
                                                                           Next came another Pistons turnover, and Wade flipped an
                                                                       underhand pass across the lane to James for another dunk and
                                                                       a 60-47 lead.
   1.35 Carole’s Destrier 2.05 Groomed (nb)
                                                                           In Atlanta, Kyle Korver scored 27 points and the Atlanta
   2.40 Whisky Yankee 3.15 Karazhan (nap)
                                                                       Hawks overcame a 27-point deficit in the first half to beat
   3.50 Juno The Muffinman 4.20 One Lucky Lady
                                                                       Boston 123-111 in double-overtime, handing the Celtics their
   4.50 Hinterland
                                                                       sixth straight loss.
                                                                           Jeff Teague had 23 points for Atlanta before fouling out in the
Leopardstown                                                           first overtime.
    1.55 Hurricane Fly                                                     Al Horford had 24 points and 13 rebounds. Josh Smith, who
   (Fontwell and Sedgefield abandoned)                                 opened the second overtime with a three-point play, had 17
                                                                       points and 14 rebounds.
                                                                           Kevin Garnett had 24 points and 10 rebounds as the Celtics © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                               
Page  G24 Sport                                                                 Saturday January 26 2013              16:31 GMT

were left with their longest losing streak in six years.
   In Chicago, Kirk Hinrich scored a season-high 25 points,
hitting six of seven three-pointers in Chicago’s 103-87 victory
                                                                    Chara and Rask star as Bruins top
over Golden State.                                                  Islanders to keep on rolling
   Nate Robinson added 22 points off the bench in the Bulls’
third straight victory. Jimmy Butler had 16 points and a career-    Boston secures third NHL win in four
high 12 rebounds starting in place of All-Star Luol Deng, who       outings, while Detroit, Vancouver and New
missed his fourth consecutive game due to a right hamstring
                                                                    Jersey also claim Friday-night victories
   David Lee, the Warriors’ All-Star selection, scored 23 points.   Associated Press in Boston
   In Cleveland, Kyrie Irving scored 35 points and the Cleveland
Cavaliers rallied from a 20-point deficit in the third quarter
to defeat the Milwaukee Bucks 113-108, while in Memphis,
Tennessee, Marc Gasol had 20 points and nine rebounds and the
Memphis Grizzlies blitzed the Brooklyn Nets 101-77.
   In other games Friday, Kevin Durant had 24 points and 11
rebounds as the Oklahoma City Thunder overcame a slow start
to overwhelm the Sacramento Kings 105-95 and Metta World
Peace hit five 3-pointers on his way to scoring 17 points in the
Los Angeles Lakers’ 102-84 victory over the Utah Jazz.
   Also Friday, the Washington Wizards earned its tenth
win of the season with a 114-101 victory over the Minnesota
Timberwolves, the Houston Rockets beat the New Orleans
Hornets 100-82 and the San Antonio Spurs had a 113-107 victory
                                                                    Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara celebrates his goal
over the Dallas Mavericks.
                                                                    against the New York Islanders. Photograph: Charles Krupa/
                                                                    Zdeno Chara scored the tie-breaking goal early in the third
                                                                    period and Tuukka Rask made 24 saves, lifting the Boston
                                                                    Bruins to a 4-2 win over the New York Islanders on Friday
                                                                       Patrice Bergeron, Shawn Thornton and Gregory Campbell
                                                                    also scored for Boston, for its third win in four outings.
                                                                       The Bruins grabbed a 1-0 lead 4.52 into the game after
                                                                    Thornton backhanded in the rebound off Doug Hamilton’s shot.
                                                                       New York tied it on Keith Aucoin’s goal midway into the
                                                                    period. Aucoin came charging into the slot and redirected Colin
                                                                    McDonald’s pass from behind the net past Rask.
                                                                       Aucoin got to a misplaced clearing attempt in the high slot
                                                                    and unloaded a slap shot past Rask’s glove to give the Islanders
                                                                    a 2-1 edge midway into the second, but the Bruins tied it less

                                                                    than 4 minutes later. Campbell controlled a rebound in front
                                                                    and the puck past Rick DiPietro.
                                                                       Boston took a 3-2 lead 7.07 into the third when Milan Lucic
                                                                    circled from behind the net and fed Chara, who fired a wrist
                                                                    shot past Rick DiPietro’s glove inside the left post from the high
  Fantasy League Classic                                               Bergeron scored on a breakaway with 6.27 to play, shifting a
                                                                    few times before tucking in a forehand shot.
  Manage a squad of 16 players                                         Chara hit the left post in the closing minute with a backhand
  and a budget of £75 million.                                      shot from the blue line after the Islanders pulled DiPietro for an
                                                                    extra skater.
  £75,000 worth of prizes to be                                        In Detroit, Henrik Zetterberg broke a tie midway through the
  won in weekly, monthly and                                        second period, and Todd Bertuzzi scored his second goal of the

  overall competitions. Beat your                                   game early in the third to lift the Detroit Red Wings to a 5-2 win
                                                                    over the Minnesota Wild.
  nearest and dearest in a friends                                     Pavel Datsyuk, who assisted on Zetterberg’s goal, put Detroit

  league.                                                           ahead by two late in the second period. Datsyuk also set up
                                                                    Bertuzzi on his second goal that gave the Red Wings a 5-2 lead.                                         In Anaheim, California, Cory Schneider made 30 saves in
                                                                    his fifth career shutout, Mason Raymond scored twice, and
                                                                    the Vancouver Canucks avenged last week’s blowout loss to © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                            
Page  G24 Sport                                                                 Saturday January 26 2013              16:31 GMT

Anaheim with three power-play goals in a 5-0 win over the
   Daniel Sedin and Raymond scored on power plays in the first
                                                                    Magnus Carlsen closes on record 2900
period, and Zack Kassian added a man-advantage goal in the          rating at Wijk aan Zee tournament
third period as the Canucks quieted Anaheim’s standing-room-
only crowd.                                                         Leonard Barden
   In other games Friday, Ilya Kovalchuk scored 4.39 into
                                                                                                      Magnus Carlsen aims for the
overtime, and the New Jersey Devils won their third straight
                                                                                                      stars and the record books this
game to start the lockout-shortened season, 3-2 over the
                                                                                                      weekend when the Tata Steel
winless Washington Capitals and Ryan Malone scored a pair of
                                                                                                      tournament at Wijk aan Zee
third-period goals as Tampa Bay beat Ottawa 6-4.
                                                                                                      reaches a climax with its final
   Also Friday, the Carolina Hurricanes scored a 3-1 win over
                                                                                                      two rounds. The 22-year-old
the Buffalo Sabres and the Winnipeg Jets won their first home
                                                                                                      world No1 has been in supreme
game of the season, beating the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-2.
                                                                                                      form with an unbeaten 8.5/11
                                                                                                      and says Garry Kasparov’s Wijk
                                                                                                      record of 10/13 is “attainable”.
George Ford guides England Saxons to                                                                     The normally reticent
                                                                    3290: Magnus Carlsen v
comeback win against Ireland A                                      Pentala Harikrishna, Tata         Norwegian also set out his major
                                                                    Steel Wijk 2013. Black has        ambitions for 2013: to capture
Ireland A 10-14 England Saxons                                      just played Be8-c6 but then       Vishy Anand’s world title and to
                                                                    spotted White’s next move         become the first human to reach
Press Association                                                                                     a 2900 rating. He is currently at
                                                                    and resigned. What did
                                                                    Carlsen plan? Illustration:       2870.
                                                                    Graphic                              Carlsen’s bid will be followed
                                                                                                      free and live online by more
                                                                    than 10,000 fans who will enjoy the action via a website
                                                                    which has videos of the action and move-by-move running
                                                                    commentary from the 3300-rated Houdini computer program.
                                                                        To join them, simply log on to and
                                                                    click Live Games. Play kicks off at 12.30 and the state-of-the-
                                                                    art viewing screen enables you to see at a glance the current
                                                                    Houdini assessment of all the other games while watching
                                                                    Carlsen. The key game on Saturday has the world No1 playing
                                                                    White against the US champion, Hikaru Nakamura, who won
                                                                    Wijk in 2011 and who wants to follow Bobby Fischer to the
George Ford kicked three penalties to help England Saxons to        world top.
a 14-10 win against Ireland Wolfhounds. Photograph: David               Leaders after Friday’s 11th round were Carlsen 8.5, Levon
Rogers/Getty Images                                                 Aronian 7.5, Anand 7, Sergey Karjakin and Nakamura 6.5.
                                                                        Carlsen and the reigning world champion, Anand,
England Saxons erased a 10-point deficit in the second half as
                                                                    dominated the first half of the event, with Anand winning a
they came out on top at the Sportsground against Ireland A.
                                                                    brilliant 23-mover against Aronian published here last week and
   Kevin McLaughlin muscled over for a 10th-minute try, with
                                                                    Carlsen showing his supreme skill at cashing in tiny advantages.
Paddy Jackson’s right boot ensuring a 10-0 half-time lead for the
                                                                        Carlsen also revealed a new approach to the openings,
Ireland Wolfhounds.
                                                                    following Fischer who in his heyday liked to revive discarded
   George Ford’s 50th-minute penalty got the Saxons off the
                                                                    systems from a century ago. In round four he unleashed the
mark and the 19-year-old fly-half went on to guide the visitors
                                                                    ancient Ponziani Opening 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 c3?! against a
home, backed by a stiffening wind.
                                                                    bemused Pentala Harikrishna.
   Ford and the man of the match, Graham Kitchener, sparked
                                                                        Grandmasters long ago discarded the Ponziani as too stodgy,
the break that eventually led, after a period of patient build-up
                                                                    but in Carlsen’s hands it led to pawn sacrifices, an attack which
play, to Will Fraser’s unconverted try in the right corner. The
                                                                    regained the pawns with interest, and delicate follow-ups
Saracens flanker did superbly well to ground the ball despite
                                                                    leading to victory.
being tackled by Luke Fitzgerald.
                                                                        Next day Harikrishna himself scored with one of the most
   The win was sealed by a late penalty from Ford from near
                                                                    creative finishes in history, when he sacrificed a rook and a
halfway – his third of the match – with the Wolfhounds pinned
                                                                    queen for a rare checkmate.
back out of scoring range.
                                                                        Pentala Harikrishna v Loek van Wely
   Both teams contained a smattering of senior-capped players
                                                                        1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 a6 5 Be2 Nf6 6 Nc3 d6 7 O-O
with some harbouring hopes of earning Six Nations call-ups.
                                                                    Be7 8 a4 Nc6 9 Be3 O-O 10 f4 Qc7 11 Kh1 Re8 12 Bf3 Bd7 13 Nb3
The fit-again Fitzgerald, enjoying his first run-out in green
                                                                    b6 14 g4 Bc8 15 g5 Nd7 16 Bg2 Bb7 17 Rf3 Bf8 18 Rh3 g6 19 Qe1
since neck surgery last summer, boosted his chances with a
                                                                    Bg7? 20 Qh4 Nf8 21 Qf2 Nd7 22 Rf1 Nb4 23 Bd4 Bxd4 24 Nxd4
workmanlike display. Leicester’s Jordan Crane captained a
                                                                    Nc6 25 f5 Nce5 26 Qh4 h5 27 Nde2? exf5 28 Nf4 Kg7? 29 Ncd5
Saxons side with an average age of less than 24.
                                                                    Bxd5 30 Nxd5 Qxc2 31 exf5 Rac8 32 Nf4 Rh8 33 fxg6 fxg6 34 © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                            
Page  G24 Sport                                                                   Saturday January 26 2013                 16:31 GMT

Ne6+ Kg8 35 Bd5 Qd2 36 Qe4 Rc1? 37 Rhf3 Kh7 38 Rf7+! Nxf7 39              He has his moods but the new Murray walks taller than the
Qxg6+! 1-0                                                            one who sometimes skulked through frustrating and perplexing
   Carlsen’s record-breaking form makes him a hot favourite for       defeats. The new Murray smiles more often, shouts less, hits
the €510,000 world title candidates tournament at the IET in          more winners, makes fewer errors. No, it was the pain of
Savoy Place, London from 14 March to 1 April. The eight-player,       confrontation that sucked the joy from him on a night – Burns’
double-round event will decide the challenger for Anand’s             Night – when the Scot should have been brimming with good
crown.                                                                feeling.
   3290 1 Nxf6! when if Qxd4 2 Rxf8 mate or Qe7 2 Rxf8+ Qxf8 3            He will get it back. He has been in this place before. And he
Nxh5 wins three pawns up.                                             knows that he can beat Djokovic over five sets in a grand slam
                                                                      final, as he did with such strength of mind and body in New
                                                                      York. He has all sorts of incentives on Sunday.
Andy Murray left drained but should                                       If he beats Djokovic, he will emulate Lew Hoad, the last
have enough in tank to win final                                      player to follow his first major with another straight away,
                                                                      in 1956. Victory would also pull him ahead of Fred Perry on
                                                                      106 wins in slam matches. He shrugged off the Perry ghost
Confrontational win over Roger Federer                                by winning the US Open, ending that awful longueur that
takes it toll but Scot has the reserves to beat                       stretched back 76 years.
Novak Djokovic in Australian Open final                                   This is his time, and he is aware of that. If he can win his
                                                                      second grand slam title, the third should come even more
Kevin Mitchell at Melbourne Park
                                                                      naturally, and the fourth. He said this week when reminded of
                                                                      the Perry record that he would like to finish his career with 200
                                                                      wins in grand slams. That is a considerable total (Federer, who
                                                                      has won 17 majors, this week won his 250th grand slam match).
                                                                          But Djokovic is renewed and buzzing. His mood is light. He
                                                                      has no injuries. And he wants revenge. It should be another
                                                                      classic, to go with the Flushing Meadows final and the semi-
                                                                      final here last year that preceded Djokovic’s astonishing victory
                                                                      over Rafael Nadal.
                                                                          Then, he had barely a day and a half to recover from the
                                                                      torture Murray put him through; here, it is Murray who is in
                                                                      that situation.
                                                                          Federer, not as deflated as might have been expected after
                                                                      losing to Murray, went with the wide consensus that Djokovic
Andy Murray needs to recover physically and mentally                  will be the favourite. He gave Murray some due, despite their
before facing Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open final in          on-court friction.
Melbourne. Photograph: Bai Xue/Xinhua Press/Corbis                        “I think he’s always played me pretty well over the years,”
It was as inevitable as anything can be in sport that two of the      he said. “He’s obviously got a winning record against me [11-9
three leading players in tennis would contest the final of the        overall, and improved to 1-3 in slams]. The match-up’s maybe
Australian Open on Sunday, but what was not so clear was who          a good one for him, I’m not sure. I don’t mind playing against
would be left standing out of Roger Federer and Andy Murray to        him. But it’s normal that with time and with age you learn, you
challenge Novak Djokovic for his title.                               become more experienced, become physically better. He’s put
    While Djokovic endured a desperate struggle to beat               himself in that situation time and time again.
Stanislas Wawrinka, either side of that quarter-final the Serb has        “So, with the win at the Olympics and the US Open, maybe
moved with scary ease through his side of the draw, never more        there’s just a little bit more belief or he’s a bit more calm overall.
impressively than dismissing the underpowered resistance              You want to be excited but you don’t want to go overly crazy on
of David Ferrer in the first semi-final on Thursday night. The        each and every point. It seems like he has more peace when he
victory gave him not only huge confidence but an extra day to         plays out there and in the process he has better results.”
recover.                                                                  What peace there was evaporated when Murray was serving
    Djokovic’s challenger is Murray. He is still standing but he is   for the match for the first time, at 6-5 in the fourth set, but, once
bruised, too. It took him exactly four hours and a good deal of       he pulled away in the fifth set, there was not a lot Federer did
pent up rage to beat Federer in one of the ugliest matches of the     that troubled him unduly.
tournament, a semi-final that risked boiling over towards the             That was the most encouraging aspect of his semi-final win,
end as both players failed to hide anger that either arrived on       coming through yet another fightback by the best player of
the night or had been simmering for a while.                          modern times.
    Rarely has Murray appeared so dispirited in victory as he             Murray says he does not like to look back but it is
did after beating Federer in five sets of rollercoaster tennis to     unavoidable. He knows he has these wins in the bank,
qualify for the final. It was an odd sight. He was weary from         performances to bolster his spirit when things get tough, as
the battle but it was more than that. He is the reigning US           they did against Federer and as they will against Djokovic.
Open champion. He beat Federer in the Olympic final and lost              “I’ve been questioned for large parts of my career about
valiantly in the Wimbledon final. He has no reason to doubt           would I be strong enough physically, mentally, do I listen to my
himself.                                                              coaches, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, whatever it is, can I handle © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                                 
Page 10 G24 Sport                                                                     Saturday January 26 2013              16:31 GMT

pressure?                                                                played most of his cricket in front of the gentler backdrop of the
    “I think those years of having all of those questions and then       Quantocks. Later he would board an orange bus that climbed
finally being able to answer them I think, yeah, it was all part         still further around hairpin bends to Mcleodganj, the hill station
of the process. So I hope on Sunday I can play a good match.             that has become the home of the Tibetan government-in-exile,
Obviously having won against Novak before in a slam final will           and visit the temple of the Dalai Lama. His Holiness had just
help mentally.”                                                          returned from the Jaipur Literary Festival but was not available
    The semi-final was his first night match of the fortnight. He        to meet the England players – not even Kevin Pietersen, in his
now has a feel for the court and the conditions. That familiarity        blue puffer jacket. He is not due to attend Sunday’s match, but
is important, because it removes nagging doubts.                         you never know.
    “Judging by our match that we played here last year and                  “To come and experience these things as part of an England
the one we played in New York, I don’t think there was a huge            tour is very special,” said Buttler, sounding like he really meant
amount of difference [in the conditions],” Murray said.                  it. “Sometimes we are a bit restricted but today we have the
    “I think the balls are slower here. Playing in the evening will      chance to have a bit of a look around. It’s nice to get out of the
also slow them down. But I actually think the court here this            hotel and in a place like this it would be a waste not to.”
year is playing fairly fast. You can get a lot of free points off your       He was not as enthusiastic when it came to discussing his
serve if you serve well, like I did this evening. The courts aren’t      future at Somerset, which has been complicated further by his
that dissimilar, it’s just the time of day you play and the balls are    promotion ahead of Kieswetter. Geoff Miller, England’s national
a bit different.”                                                        selector, confirmed this week that Buttler’s international
    And the opponent. If Djokovic was always a certainty to              prospects would be advanced if he wore the wicketkeeping
reach the final, Murray may be glad he has taken a harder route.         gloves more often for his county. But Kieswetter is still regarded
He is absolutely steeled for battle, whatever his downcast mien          as the better keeper, he is still only 25 and he will be determined
in victory.                                                              to retain the role at county level.
                                                                             The pair get on well, and both are happy in Taunton. Dave
                                                                         Nosworthy, the South African who was appointed last month as
England’s Jos Buttler reflects on                                        director of cricket succeeding the Somerset stalwart Brian Rose,
elevation from an eagle’s eye view                                       has inherited a delicate situation.
                                                                             “There will be a time when I have to have a discussion
                                                                         with Somerset and see what the best way is for my career
Selection in the national one-day and                                    to move forward,” Buttler conceded. “Wicketkeeping is
Twenty20 teams has come at the expense of                                something I really want to develop but I’m not sure I’ll get those
his Somerset team-mate Craig Kieswetter                                  opportunities with Somerset at the minute. I’ll just look to keep
                                                                         improving my game, work hard and see what happens.”
Andy Wilson in Dharamsala
                                                                             Kieswetter has taken his demotion, which was followed
                                                                         by an unusually brutal ejection from the squad for the 50-
                                                                         over series in New Zealand next month, with good grace,
                                                                         wishing Buttler well before Wednesday’s defeat in Chandigarh
                                                                . “It is a bit tricky because Craig and I are good
                                                                         friends and have been for a number of years,” Buttler added. “I
                                                                         actually made my Somerset debut because Craig was away with
                                                                         England. I don’t think this will change that – this is professional
                                                                         sport and there’s only 11 spaces in the England side that a lot of
                                                                         people want. My opportunity has come from the demise of a
                                                                         friend and that’s not ideal, when your mate misses out. But it’s
                                                                         a huge opportunity for me and one that I want to take.”
                                                                             Now Buttler has a new friendly rival, Jonny Bairstow, who
                                                                         would almost certainly have worn the gloves in this series had
England’s Jos Buttler during his memorable 10-ball 32 against            he not stayed at home for personal reasons ,
South Africa at Edgbaston in September 2012. Photograph:                 and must therefore remain in the box seat for the Champions
Richard Heathcote/Getty Images                                           Trophy next summer. “Jonny’s a very good cricketer and
Can an England cricketer ever have conducted a press                     very good wicketkeeper and I can only look to take every
conference in a more stunning location? Jos Buttler discussed            opportunity I get,” said Buttler, who has played 14 T20
being elevated ahead of his Somerset team-mate Craig                     internationals for England and opened his box of batting tricks
Kieswetter in one-day and Twenty20 cricket at an elevation of            in making an unbeaten 32 from 10 balls against South Africa at
around 6,000 feet above sea level on the terrace of the team             Edgbaston last summer . “Hopefully I will get
hotel, looking down across the Kangra Valley to the Himachal             another game here where I can put my case forward.”
Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, which will on Sunday                    The supposed threat to the game from snow has turned out
become the highest to have staged an international match.                to be so much hot air, as temperatures at the ground down in
   Two species of vulture circled on the thermals overhead               Dharamsala are considerably warmer than those reported from
and behind Buttler a Steppe eagle drifted across the snow-               the weather station at Mcleodganj and Sunday’s forecast is for
capped Dhauladhar Range of the Himalayas. “I’ve never been               more pleasant sunshine. Rain does not seem to be an issue,
anywhere like it,” said the 23-year-old from Taunton, who has            possibly because the local Cricket Association on Thursday © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                                                 
Page 11 G24 Sport                                                  Saturday January 26 2013   16:31 GMT

repeated the puja (offering) to appease the rain god Indrunag
that has been followed by dry conditions for each of the
previous major matches at the ground, including a couple in the
Indian Premier League.
   The only threat now is heavy dew which could prevent a
prompt start at 9am, but an extra hour is available meaning the
game could finish under floodlights in the evening chill.
   However, Hampshire’s left-arm spinner Danny Briggs will
not be involved and has also been ruled out of the T20 series in
New Zealand after spraining his ankle in training after the team
trip to the temple. That means yet another call-up for Joe Root,
whose busy winter will now continue in all three forms of the
game. © Guardian News and Media Limited 2012                                 

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