LITESPORT London Lite Friday, 3 July 2009 35 ALL THE ACES BREAKING NEWS... Howzat! Top ref Bennett is becoming cricket boss PREMIER League referee Steve Bennett has been appointed by the England and Wales Cricket Board as an independent director of their new association of cricket officials. The former FIFA referee, who also works as an instructor for world footballs governing body, will be involved in the development of umpires and off-field officials in partnership with the ECB. Bennett (above) said: I am delighted to have been appointed at such an exciting time in cricket. Officials are vital players in all sports. I understand the importance of their role and the satisfaction to be gained from officiating and being part of any match. ECB chief executive David Collier added: Steves unique background will be invaluable in this role. His appointment demonstrates the importance that ECB places on our officials being at the heart of the game. Record fine and ban for Henderson NICKY HENDERSON has been fined a record 40,000 and is unable to race horses for the next three months over the Moonlit Path case. The leading National Hunt trainer was last Monday found guilty of using a prohibited substance to improve the performance of The Queens mare at Huntingdon in February. Moonlit Path was found to have traces of the anti-bleeding drug tranexamic acid. Former champion trainer Henderson attended a personal hearing on Thursday evening, when pleas of mitigation were entered to a British Horseracing Authority panel, and learned of his punishment this morning. The 58-year-old handler faced a possible long-term disqualification from the training ranks, but will instead be unable to run any of his horses from 11 July to 10 October. OWENS OFF TO UNITED: PAGE 32 Brett lethal after chat with McGrath BRETT LEE reckons Glenn McGrath was the inspiration behind his rising for the Ashes performance at New Road yesterday. Lee took five wickets in seven overs against the England Lions to boost his chances of selection for next weeks first Ashes Test in Cardiff. Lee grinned: I had a really good chat to Glenn the other night. He offered his advice. He was floating through this town (Worcester) so we bled him for as much information as we could get. The boys were like sponges around him and so we should be. The guy has been an amazing player with so many Test wickets (563). It blows my mind how a fast bowler can be around that long and take all those wickets. We tried to understand what he has done and now my role is to help a few of the younger guys in the squad coming through with my experience. We just asked him why he was so successful when bowling over here and he gave us a pep talk and a few things to work on. A few things he said definitely helped me today. The Lions were coasting at 172 without loss, with wicketkeeper Stephen Moore hitting 120, before Lee struck. Lee, who took a sixth wicket today, added: I now see myself having two roles, to get early wickets and, if that doesnt happen, to come back with the older ball when it is reverse swinging. The Lions were all out for 352 chasing Australias 358. BY HARRY LANE THEASHESDATES FIRSTTEST Wednesday, 8 July - Sunday 12 July Sophia Gardens, Cardiff SECONDTEST Thursday, 16 July - Monday, 20 July Lords, London THIRDTEST Thursday, 30 July - Monday, 3 August Edgbaston, Birmingham FOURTHTEST Friday, 7 August - Tuesday, 11 August Headingley, Leeds FIFTHTEST Thursday, 20 August - Monday, 24 August Kennington Oval, London High five: Brett Lee yesterday THE CHAMPIONSHIPS WIMBLEDON 2009 WOMENS FINALTomorrow, live on BBC1, 1.25pm CHAMPIONSHIPSTHE VENUS WILLIAMS (3) v SERENA WILLIAMS (2) Theyve played each other 20 times and met in seven Grand Slam finals, but never have Venus and Serena had such contrasting semi-finals. Serena, curiously seeded No2 when she is clearly the best in the world, needed all her power and verve to get past Elena Dementieva in yesterdays first semi-final on Centre Court. She eventually triumphed 6-7, 7-5, 8-6 after saving a completely unexpected match point against a vastly improved Russian opponent. The match lasted two hours and 48 minutes. Venus then emerged and dismantled the No1 seed, Dinara Safina, who is clearly not the best in the world, 6-0, 6-1 in 51 minutes. Venus, attempting to make it three Wimbledon crowns in succession, wont find it quite so serene tomorrow. Sister act four is on but dads flown off VENUS and Serena Williams are preparing for a fourth Sister Act final at Wimbledon -- but dad Richard wont be there to see it. Serena (below, left) survived a scare against Russian Elena Dementieva in her semi-final yesterday and said: My dad usually leaves now.Id love him to stay -- Im going to ask him -- but he usually leaves because his work is done really. Williams senior says he will never break his vow not to watch his daughters play each other. He repeated yesterday: I would never watch them, Id have a heart attack. Its just too difficult. I have never even watched them on TV. Once when they played my neighbour recorded it but I said, No, I cant watch that. As soon as Venus got up 5-0 (in the first set of her easy semi-final triumph over No1 seed Dinara Safina), I came down and booked my flight home. FINALCLASHES AUSTRALIAN OPEN 2003: Serena won 7-6, 3-6, 6-4 FRENCH OPEN 2002: Serena won 7-5, 6-3 WIMBLEDON 2002: Serena won 7-6, 6-3 2003: Serena won 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 2008: Venus won 7-5, 6-4 (left) US OPEN 2001: Venus won 6-2, 6-4 2002: Serena won 6-4, 6-3 HEAD-TO-HEAD 10 wins each Roddickisundernoillusionsaboutthe fans. He holds up his right hand and grins: We might be able to count the people for me on this hand. But it will be something to remember. The crowds going to be electric. Its going to be a great atmosphere and one I can certainly appreciate, even if its not for me. BATTLE OF THE ANDYS SERVE Today we will be plagued by two words: Ace and Roddick. The Americans slingshot action is a huge weapon, Murray is more classical, usually more accurate. VERDICT: HOT RODDICK RETURN Since the great Andre Agassi quit, Murray has taken the mantle of worlds best returner. Roddick struggles to scramble. VERDICT: MIGHTY MURRAY FORM Roddick is enjoying his best year since 2006 but Murray has won 10 straight matches on grass having made history at Queens. VERDICT: MIGHTY MURRAY FITNESS Coach Larry Stefanki has worked hard on Roddicks stamina, but Murray runs for fun. VERDICT: MIGHTY MURRAY index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html