23-02-2019 EFL warns Coventry City they risk expulsion over home venue uncertainty

• Coventry given deadline of 5 March to provide an update• Club say they ‘want to do a deal’ to stay at Ricoh ArenaOne hundred years after joining the Football League, Coventry City have been warned they may face expulsion from it if they do not confirm where they plan to host matches next season.The club’s tenancy at the Ricoh Arena runs out this summer and no end is in sight to their long-running dispute over rent and other issues with the stadium’s owners, the Premiership rugby club Wasps, and Coventry city council, the freeholder. The EFL says the uncertainty cannot be tolerated much longer. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 The Fiver | Staring us in the face, in plain sight, giving us the big do-you-want-some

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!Yesterday evening, Barcelona took 25 shots against Lyon but none of them went in, so they drew for the fourth time in five matches. At Anfield, Naby Keïta had a pass completion rate of 74%. But apart from those two examples of things that are brimful of pretty attacking promise but aren’t quite clicking at the moment, there was very little to talk about in Big Cup. The needle on the Fiver’s patented Entertainmentometer™© got stuck halfway between Mildly Diverting But Only Because There’s Nothing On Any Of The Other Channels and Intriguing But Only Because You’re Trying Way Too Hard. Bah. As a banner displayed in the Bayern end and applauded by the Liverpool fans noted, you had to pay £48 for a ticket to watch this stuff. One day a real rain will come. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Faulty Nike trainer injures Zion Williamson 33 seconds into college basketball game – video

Zion Williamson hit the headlines for the wrong reasons as he was forced off with a knee injury after just 33 seconds after his faulty Nike trainer blew out. Williamson was the likely No 1 pick for the NBA Draft in June. Many notable faces watched on including US president Barack Obama and film director Spike Lee. The North Carolina Tar Heels went on to win 88-72 on Wednesday Zion Williamson felled by faulty Nike as North Carolina blast top-ranked Duke Continue reading...

23-02-2019 In an age of endless cricket Sri Lanka just gave us a special moment | Andy Bull

Kusal Perera’s and Oshada Fernando’s last-wicket stand of 78 to beat South Africa last weekend was one of the finest spectacles the game has produced in recent yearsLast Saturday in Christchurch, Martin Guptill thrashed a century for New Zealand in a one-day game against Bangladesh; in Dubai, Shahid Afridi finished off Multan Sultans’ Twenty20 match against Islamabad United with back-to-back sixes; and in Chittagong a young kid called Jamie Smith made a run-a-ball hundred for England Under-19s in a Test against Bangladesh. Cricket’s always on, somewhere or other, one format or another, bat hitting ball like the background tick-tock of a wall clock, something you only really notice when you look at it, catch a fraction of the match in a gif, a clip, a stream, or tweet, or a glance at a scorecard.Amid all the rest of it, South Africa and Sri Lanka were playing in the first Test at Kingsmead in Durban. The match had meandered into a fourth day and it looked as if it was only going one way. South Africa v Sri Lanka isn’t necessarily a series you stop to watch. They have been playing each other for only 26 years and, in South Africa, the contests have been off-puttingly one-sided. Sri Lanka had played 13 Tests there before this series and won only one of them, in 2011, when Kumar Sangakkara and Thilan Samararweera made all the runs and Rangana Herath took most of the wickets. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 England in West Indies: Hosts claim dramatic 26-run victory

West Indies produce an inspired fightback to claim a thrilling 26-run victory over England and level the one-day series at 1-1.

23-02-2019 Waratahs accused of playing like Harlem Globetrotters after scare in Japan

NSW edge past Sunwolves 31-30 in TokyoCaptain Michael Hooper unhappy with outingCaptain Michael Hooper has accused his NSW Waratahs of trying to play like the Harlem Globetrotters after scraping to an unimpressive 31-30 Super Rugby win over the Sunwolves. A record-breaking double from Israel Folau helped the Waratahs survive an enormous fright in Tokyo on Saturday, with the fast-finishing hosts coming painfully close to pulling off an upset.The Sunwolves were only denied victory when five-eighth Hayden Parker skewed a late dropped-goal attempt. Under pressure from Karmichael Hunt, Parker could not land his attempt from straight in front of the posts, ending a game in which the Kiwi’s accurate goalkicking kept the Sunwolves in touch. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Wing commanders: why Six Nations quicks are rolling back the years

Half the 32 tries scored in this year’s tournament have been scored by wide men as the likes of Jonny May and George North have emerged as key attacking forces once againInterviewing Maurice Richards, the Wales wing who scored four tries against England in 1969, was a warming return to days long gone, when matches that were clotted with set-pieces and punch-ups were invariably interrupted by moments of brilliance that endure in the memory.Richards kick-started the golden era for Wales when they won the triple crown 50 years ago, but left for rugby league six months later. Others at that time went on to become world renowned while Richards was breaking records at Salford, but the game has seen few more accomplished wings: he had everything and more. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Snooker Shoot Out: Emma Parker loses to Laxman Rawat in first round

Women's under-21 number one Emma Parker loses to Laxman Rawat in the first round of the Snooker Shoot Out in Watford.

23-02-2019 Wales will not afford England a free ride to potential grand slam | Robert Kitson

After a dominant start to the competition England can expect to face a major examination against Warren Gatland’s teamThe toll booths were removed from the Severn Bridge two months ago but granting a free ride to English rugby teams in Cardiff will never catch on. It explains why the Six Nations retains its passion and lustre, in defiance of societal changes and Britain’s shifting political sands. The desire to make England pay for the perceived crime of being English is always strongest on days like this, regardless of the championship table. Related: Eddie Jones finds a back-row trio who are singing from same song sheet | Andy Bull Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Solskjær says beating Liverpool would be ‘worthy of United’s history’

• United have lost only one of caretaker’s 13 games in charge• Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard could return on SundayOle Gunnar Solskjær believes if Manchester United beat Liverpool at Old Trafford on Sunday it will be another step towards making his side one “worthy of club history”.The interim-manager has won 11 of his 13 games in charge, losing just once, to Paris Saint-Germain in last week’s Champions League last-16 first leg. Three of those victories were at Tottenham, Arsenal and Chelsea, moreover. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 England have been on the front foot. Kyle Sinckler must take a lot of credit | Ugo Monye

The prop has been described as a ‘timebomb’ and, as Wales will see in Cardiff, he is certainly an explosive forceWhen I look at Kyle Sinckler and how he is performing I see someone who typifies this current England team. Abrasive, dynamic and full of energy and enthusiasm. He may have what I would call his “odd moments” every now and again but I can live with that if you get the rest of the package and that is what we are now seeing. Related: Warren Gatland calls England’s Kyle Sinckler an ‘emotional timebomb’ Continue reading...

23-02-2019 England blown away by West Indies seamer Sheldon Cottrell in second ODI

• Second ODI: West Indies 289-6; England 263• Cottrell takes 5-46 as West Indies win by 26 runs• View the full scorecard from the Kensington OvalA tight, tense evening in balmy Bridgetown saw West Indies level their one-day series with England thanks to an inspired spell of bowling from Jason Holder and five wickets for Sheldon Cottrell, a left-armer with a zany celebration.Eoin Morgan’s tourists had been chasing 290 to win this second fixture, a target set up by Shimron Hetmyer’s unbeaten 104 in the first innings. And after half-centuries from the England captain (70) and Ben Stokes (79) they appeared to be heading towards a 2-0 series lead when needing 62 from 61 balls with six wickets in hand. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Maurizio Sarri heads to Carabao Cup final as Chelsea’s dead man walking | Dominic Fifield

Wembley appearance will do little to kill the sense of inevitability over the Italian’s future at Stamford BridgeMaurizio Sarri strides out at Wembley a dead man walking. He can cling to football’s capacity to shock, and even convince himself an appearance in the Carabao Cup final will shrug Chelsea out of their slump in form. Theirs should be the greater motivation, after all, given the wounds are raw from the six-goal pummelling inflicted by Manchester City only a fortnight ago. Yet, in truth, there is a sense of inevitability about where this is heading.Passage was negotiated safely, in the end, beyond Malmö in the Europa League on Thursday, with Dynamo Kyiv to come in the last 16, yet the respite seems temporary. The home support, so vociferous in their dissent a few days previously as the team’s FA Cup defence petered out against Manchester United, had barely acknowledged their head coach, instead joyously latching on to Callum Hudson-Odoi’s rare start or the welcome distraction of the cameos delivered by Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Ethan Ampadu off the bench. It would be a surprise if any of that trio start on Sunday. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Javier Hernández on hand as West Ham recover from early blow to beat Fulham

Fulham have only themselves to blame for their season, confused decision-making and erratic management probably sending them straight back to the Championship. But on this one occasion they can feel genuinely aggrieved that their fate was unfairly decided by someone else.They were ahead and playing well against West Ham, when Javier Hernández punched home a goal and changed the course of a game that ended in defeat for Claudio Ranieri’s side. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Gareth Anscombe selection highlights Wales’s adapted Warrenball strategy

Warren Gatland’s fly-half decision suggests Wales will vary their attack plan in the Six Nations duel with EnglandA constant of Welsh rugby through the years has been a raging debate about who should play at fly-half. Even Cliff Morgan, Barry John and Phil Bennett had their detractors, but lost in the verbal jousting between Warren Gatland and Eddie Jones this week was the former’s decision to play Gareth Anscombe at 10 against England ahead of the more experienced and battle-hardened Dan Biggar. Related: Wales v England: remembering six of their best meetings down the years Continue reading...

23-02-2019 'Humble and generous, but a private enigma' - who was Leicester City's owner?

Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is revered in Leicester as the man who presided over one of sport's great triumphs - but who was the billionaire Thai businessman?

23-02-2019 What is the longest gap between two meetings of the same football teams? | The Knowledge

Plus: sent off after scoring a hat-trick, outscoring your age in a season and putting a corner flag to different use. Mail us or tweet @TheKnowledge_GU“When Newport played Manchester City in the FA Cup, it was the first time that the fixture had been played for more than 56 years,” writes Mark Meadowcroft. “The last match, on 24 October 1962 (2-1 to City at Maine Road in the League Cup) was at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis and the week after Love Me Do first charted. Is there a longer gap between two meetings of the same opponents?”Yes there is, Mark. Our first suggestion comes from Simon Cook: “Arsenal played Brentford on 26 September 2018 in the League Cup, 71 years after their last meeting on 26 May 1947.” Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Wales v England: remembering six of their best meetings down the years

We delve into the Guardian and Observer archives to mine excerpts from match reports of memorable Five and Six Nations clashesWales, with a delirious commitment to handling rugby which at times made one wonder at the reality of it all, completely shattered England’s delusions of winning the triple crown and sharing the Championship. It must be said that in the making of this, one of the greatest spectaculars ever seen in a rugby international in the British Isles, England fully played their part. Continue reading...