In the lead
ABU DHABI - Mark Webber grabbed the 13th pole position of his career yesterday, clocking the fastest lap in a tense qualifying session as Red Bull swept the front row of the grid for today's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The 37-year-old, who retires from Formula One at the end of the season, recorded 1min 39.957sec to edge out newly-crowned quadruple world champion teammate Sebastian Vettel.
MOSCOW - Russian Premier League leaders Zenit St Petersburg's attempt to chalk up a ninth consecutive win was thwarted yesterday when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Amkar Perm. But Zenit remain top with 36 points from 15 matches, six points ahead of Spartak and Lokomotiv who face each other today in the Moscow derby.
CAGLIARI, Italy - Roberta Vinci and Sara Errani struggled but prevailed in the opening singles against an under-strength Russia to put Italy on the brink of a fourth Fed Cup women's tennis title yesterday. Vinci, the winner of nine WTA singles titles, overcame a surprisingly tough challenge from Alexandra Panova, who has reached only one WTA final.
STOKE-ON-TRENT, England - Stoke City's Asmir Begovic became the fifth goalkeeper to score in a Premier League match when the Bosnian struck after just 13 seconds against Southampton yesterday. Begovic opened the scoring at the Britannia Stadium with a wind-assisted clearance from deep inside his own penalty area.
One point lead
LONDON - Burnley's advantage at the top of English football's second tier was cut to one point yesterday when held to a 2-2 draw at Millwall, while second-placed Leicester won 3-0 at Watford. Sean Dyche's team trailed 2-0 at The Den as first half goals from Australia striker Scott McDonald and Nigerian defender Danny Shittu put the hosts in control.
WELLINGTON - A back injury has forced Black Caps captain Brendon McCullum home from New Zealand's cricket tour of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. He has had a MRI scan and will return to New Zealand immediately for further review and to begin rehabilitation. The Black Caps have one ODI and a Twenty20 match to play in Bangladesh.
Losing run ends
PARIS - Marseille's worrying losing five-match run finally came to an end at Rennes in a 1-1 draw but French soccer's Ligue 1 was overshadowed yesterdayy by Ajaccio sacking coach Fabrizio Ravanelli. Rennes' Portuguese striker Nelson Oliveira put the hosts in front from 20 metres after nine minutes, only for his effort to be cancelled out by Jordan Ayew six minutes later.
PHILADELPHIA - The dream NBA head coaching start continues for former Australian Boomers coach Brett Brown. Widely expected to be one of the league's worst teams, Brown's Philadelphia 76ers extended their winning start to the season to 3-0 with a 107-104 win over the Chicago Bulls yesterday. Michael Carter Williams was again exceptional for the 76ers .