LITESPORT London Lite Friday, 4 September 2009 35 Inbrief Ali Cooks up a storm at Essex ALASTAIR COOK celebrated his first NatWest Pro 40 outing of the season with a match-winning 104 to see Essex home by seven wickets against Hampshire at Chelmsford. The England opener hammered 13 fours in 102 deliveries as Essex passed their opponents total of 246 for five with seven balls to spare. Essex are now six points adrift of leaders Sussex with a game in hand. Smiths bloody great solution ENGLAND coach Tony Smith believes rugby union can learn lessons from the way the 13-man code cleaned up their act The Rugby League International Federation removed all advantages from faking blood injuries when they included blood-bins as part of the limited interchange rule and Smith thinks union should follow suit. He said: All sorts of things that used to go on when a blood-bin counted as a substitution. McGinley back in the groove PAUL MCGINLEY has high hopes of making his first trip to the Swiss Alps for 14 years a memorable one. The start of Ryder Cup qualifying appeared to inspire the 42-year-old in yesterdays first round of the Omega European Masters. A five under par 66 meant McGinley resumed this morning in joint ninth place, four strokes behind Australian Brett Rumford. Its a long time since Ive played that consistently, he said. Bolt targeting 200m record USAIN BOLT believes his 100 metres world record will be more difficult to improve upon than his 200m time. The Jamaican superstar produced dazzling displays when lowering both his previous records set at last summers Olympic Games at the World Championships in Berlin last month. He said: In the 200m it is easier. If you make a mistake then you can go quicker in the second half. Posada leads Yankees to win NEW YORK YANKEES got into double figures for the second consecutive night when they inflicted a 10-5 defeat on Toronto in American League East. The victory was marked by Jorge Posadas four RBIs while Alex Rodriguez claimed his 24th home run. It maintains their lead at the top of the division with Boston still adrift although the Red Sox still lead the wild card standings after a 6-3 win over Tampa Bay. WINMIDDLESEXSEASONTICKETS THANKStoMiddlesexCountyCricketClub, wevegotTENfabulousseasonticketstogive awaytothisyearsMiddlesexCCCUxbridge Festival.Winnerswillgetfreeentryintoall fourofMiddlesexsmatchesatthisyears UxbridgeFestival--thatsafantasticten daysofcricketthroughoutthemonthof September! TheUxbridgeFestivalsees MiddlesextakingonDerbyshire onSunday,13Septemberand NorthamptonshireonSaturday, 19September,lookingfortwo wins,whichmaybeenoughtosee themcrowned2009DivisionTwo champions! Youllalsogettoseetwofour-dayLVCounty ChampionshipmatchesasMiddlesexplay hosttotheleaguestoptwosidesfortheir finaltwofixtures.LeagueleadersKentare theopposition,withthegamestartingon Wednesday,9SeptemberandMiddlesextake onDerbyshire,currentlysecond,startingon Tuesday,15September.Havingalreadybeaten Kentearlierthisseasonandhavingdrawn withDerbyshire,bothfixturespromisetobe excitingseason-endencounterswithallsides needingtosecurevictories. UxbridgeCricket ClubsParkRoadgroundisthevenueofthe 2009MiddlesexCCCUxbridgeFestivaland youcanstandachanceofwinningone ofthetenUxbridgeFestivalseason ticketsandcatchingeverysingle daysplaybysimplyansweringthe followingquestion: By what name are Middlesexs one day side now known? Text LL SPORTwithyouranswer, nameandanumberwhereyoucan bereachedto65400.(Textscost50pplus standardnetworkcharges).Or,e-mailusat thesamedetails(pleasespecifyMiddlesex inthesubjectfield).Allentriestobereceived by9amtomorrow.Entrantsmustbeover18 (onlyoneentryperperson).Usualrulesapply. Winnerswillbechosenatrandom.Theeditors decisionisfinal. ofmonththethroughoutcricketofdays onewinningofchanceastandcanyou seasonFestivalUxbridgetentheof singleeverycatchingandtickets Text canyouwherenumberaandname Strauss slams decision to axe FP Trophy ahead of World Cup ANDY MURRAY spent his day off in New York yesterday weighing into the debateoverthemeritsof theworldrank- ingsbyquestioningtheWilliamssisters interest in tournaments outside the grand slams. Russian Dinara Safina holds the wom- ens number one ranking despite not having won a grand slam title, while Serena Williams has won three of the last four grand slam womens singles titles, and has been unable to dislodge her rival at the top of the WTA Tour standings. Murray, who like Safina is yet to win a slam, told BBC Radio Five Live the debate was inevitable but he was con- vinced the ranking systems as they stand had plenty of merit. The only reason is that its Safina, because shes never won a slam before, Murray said. People are saying, How can she be number one if shes never won a slam?. Its because the ranking system rewards consistency, and there has to be an element of that, but its also very important that at the slams you get double the amount of points to win a grand slam than you do for any other tournament on the mens tour. Normally it works pretty well, becauseonthemenssidethetopplayers a lway s sh o w u p f o r t h e b i g tournaments. On the womens side I dont think Serena and Venus show up as much. Tennis (has) an 11-month calendar. If you have ranking points which are too small for Serena to turn up at, then all of a sudden the whole calendar is com- pletely pointless and she can turn up which is probably what she wants to do at the four slams and play, and then not play for the rest of the year. And I think you have to be rewarded for consistency, and her consistency in slams is great, but in the other tourna- ments I dont think it is. As World No2 Murray prepares to play Chiles Paul Capdeville later today at Arthur Ashe Stadium in the second round,15-timegrandslamwinnerRoger Federer joined the chorus including JohnMcEnroeandAndreAgassiback- ing him to have a successful US Open. The world number one, who defeated Murray in last years final at Flushing Meadows, said: I think this year, with one more year of experience, hes defi- nitely got a great chance to do well. Murray has grand slam at Williams sisters over consistency First ODI: Today, SS1, from 12.30pm Second ODI: Sunday, SS1, from 10am Sharapova relaxed as herrivalscourtdisaster Live on Sky Sports 2, from 4pm A RASH of startling upsets on Maria Sharapovas side of the U.S. Open draw has not elevated her chances of winning, claims the Russian. After fourth seed Elena Dementieva and number five Jelena Jankovic were unexpectedly knocked out and Sharapova (right) dismissed 17- year-old American wildcard Christina McHale 6-2 6-1, she said: Just because other people are struggling doesnt make me a bigger contender. Im a contender when Im in the draw. Thats the way I look at it. I play one match at a time. I mean, other peoples struggles dont make my draw or anything else in my path to a grand slam easier. Next up for the Sharapova will be Melanie Oudin, the 17-year-old giant- killer who stunned Dementieva 5-7 6-4 6-3. BY DAVID DIBBLE Verbal volley: Andy Murray speaks out against Serena (above) and Venus Williams ENGLAND captain Andrew Strauss has warned the lack of a domestic 50-over competition would not help his sides chances at the 2011 World Cup. The England and Wales Cricket Board announced last month that the Friends Provident trophy will cease to exist from next season, with the Pro 40 and an expanded Twenty20 Cup the only limited overs county competitions. England tackle Australia today in the first of seven one-dayers and Strauss questioned why the county season cannot mirror the international game. Domestic cricket should mirror international cricket so in that respect playing 40-over cricket is not ideal, said Strauss (below). It just seems sensible to me that if your domestic season is a way of preparing players for international cricket you should be playing the same game. Strauss won the toss at the Oval this morning and opted to field. ENGLAND: Ravi Bopara, Andrew Strauss (capt), Matt Prior (wk), Owais Shah, Paul Collingwood , Luke Wright, Stuart Broad, Adil Rashid, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Ryan Sidebottom announced last month that the Friends Provident trophy will cease to exist from next season, with the Pro 40 and an expanded Twenty20 Cup the only limited overs county England tackle Australia season is a way of preparing players for international cricket you should be playing the same game. Strauss won the toss at the Oval this eld.morning and opted to fi ENGLAND PaulShah,Owais(wk),PriorMatt(capt), Broad,StuartWright,Luke,Collingwood JamesSwann,GraemeRashid,Adil 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.html36.html37.html38.html39.html