Hughie Fury vs Alexander Povetkin RESULT: Russian beats Brit by decision on Lomachenko vs Campbell undercard

31 Aug

Alexander Povetkin beat Hughie Fury by unanimous decision on Saturday night at the O2 Arena in London.

On the undercard of Vasyl Lomachenko vs Luke Campbell, the Russian outpointed the Brit in an unentertaining affair.

Povetkin did enough to outpoint Fury
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The bout began with Fury in control of the early rounds, making things scrappy and frustraing Povetkin.

However, the 39-year-old grew into the contest and a cut in the mid rounds badly affected Tyson Fury’s cousin.

Povetkin took most of the rounds down the stretch and did enough to claim the win on the three judges scorecards.

All of the officials had the bout exactly the same – 117-111 for Povetkin, who turns 40 on Monday.

Regis Prograis vs Josh Taylor, Derek Chisora vs Joseph Parker officially announced for October 26 in London

31 Aug

The World Boxing Super Series final between Regis Prograis and Josh Taylor will take place on a show shared with Derek Chisora vs Joseph Parker, October 26 at London’s O2 Arena.

Despite serious legal problems putting the fight in jeopardy earlier this month, Prograis vs Taylor will now go ahead as originally planned in the final of the super-lightweight tournament.

Regis Prograis is the WBA champion, Josh Taylor is the IBF champion
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America’s WBA champion Prograis will unify titles with Scotland’s IBF champion Taylor, after they both won belts in their respective semi-finals.

Regis’ team initially filed a lawsuit with the intention of pulling out of the tournament due to financial and timescale concerns, however a deal has now been done to fuse the final with Eddie Hearn’s October 26 show to make a pay-per-view card.

Derek Chisora knocked out Artur Szpilka on July 20
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Also on the O2 Arena bill will be a thrilling heavyweight clash between Derek Chisora and Joseph Parker.

On top of this, Ricky Burns will face Lee Selby in a light weight clash and Lawrence Okolie will challenge Yves Ngabu for the European cruiserweight title.

Conor Benn will also feature.

Joseph Parker has only been beaten by Anthony Joshua and Dillian Whyte
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Aston Villa boss Dean Smith defends Jack Grealish and fumes at the officials after ‘perfectly good equaliser’ ruled out against Crystal Palace

31 Aug

Dean Smith criticised the officials for ruling out what he considered to be a ‘perfectly good’ last-gasp equaliser as 10-man Aston Villa were beaten at Crystal Palace.

After securing a rare victory at Manchester United last weekend, the Eagles had just about enough to win as Jordan Ayew’s second-half strike secured a 1-0 win against a Villa side who played with a man short for over half an hour following the dismissal of Trezeguet.

Dean Smith felt it necessary to defend Jack Grealish
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The visitors thought they had rescued a late point as substitute Henri Lansbury smashed home but referee Kevin Friend pulled play back and booked indignant Villa captain Jack Grealish for simulation.

It was unclear whether or not Friend had consulted the video assistant referee before blowing his whistle but the goal was chalked off and Villa were denied their equaliser.

Smith, who named the same starting line-up that beat Everton last week, felt the goal should have stood and defended Grealish against accusations of simulation.

“(It was a) good goal,” he said. “I think everyone else’s view was good goal.

Grealish was left flabbergasted by the decision
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The Villa players were left fuming after Kevin Friend booked Grealish
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“No one could understand why it wasn’t given. I spoke in the week about VAR and subjective decisions but that system is meant to right wrongs.

“I wondered what I’d be like when that system went against me. He got a nudge from (Wilfried) Zaha in the back. As he offloads it, (Gary) Cahill comes into the tackle as well. Simulation? No chance.

“Someone just put to me that his reputation may precede him. Well, he was the most fouled player in the Championship last season for a reason. He may be in this league as well. A perfectly good goal for me.

“I’ll probably get some waffle about the reasons, but it was a poor decision. I believe any goal that is scored goes to VAR. I don’t know whether it did or not.

“For me, I didn’t understand the officials’ decision-making today.

“If you’re Jack Grealish, I’d be raging. He’s having his integrity questioned. He’s made a great run, laid it off for Henri Lansbury to score.

“He’s had his integrity questioned not only by the officials here, but in Stockley Park as well. Jack wasn’t even looking for a foul.”

VAR in boxing – Charlie Edwards knocked out but keeps world title after replays show illegal punch on Lomachenko vs Campbell undercard

31 Aug

Charlie Edwards was knocked out but still retained his WBC flyweight title amid bizarre, controversial circumstances on Saturday night in London.

A VAR instant replay decision saw Julio Cesar Martinez’s KO immediately overturned by the WBC on the undercard of Vasyl Lomachenko vs Luke Campbell.

Martinez had Edwards badly hurt
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The late shot was decisive
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After a tight opening two rounds, the Mexican challenger badly hurt the British champion and forced him to sink to the canvas.

However, Martinez then hit Edwards again while he was already down and this shot caused him to writhe around in pain, unable to beat the count.

The Mexican initially celebrated amid the Brit’s devastation, though these scenes were shortlived.

WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman took to the ring and quickly announced that the decision had been overturned by their instant replay team, who few others even knew were in effect.

The fight was instead ruled a ‘no contest’, so Edwards retained his flyweight world title.

Sulaiman added that an immediate rematch would be ordered to settle the dispute once and for all.

Joshua Buatsi wins by knockout on Lomachenko vs Campbell undercard, but KO is controversial

31 Aug

Joshua Buatsi put on an impressive display and won by vicious knockout on Saturday night, but his opponent wasn’t happy with the finish.

Ryan Ford put up a tough test and lasted seven rounds against one of the UK’s top prospects, though eventually went down after a punishing onslaught.

Joshua Buatsi was always in control against Ryan Ford
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However, replays showed that the decisive blow that saw the Canadian sink to the canvas came from a low shot and the beaten man complained about this in his post-fight interview.

The referee made nothing of Ford’s complaints and simply counted him out after he hit the deck.

Therefore, the result stood and Buatsi moved to 12-0 (10 KOs) regardless.

Ford protested the finish
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Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma subjected to vile racist abuse by Twitter trolls as Frank Lampard calls for online profile policing

31 Aug

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has reiterated his demand for social media platforms to hold users accountable for online abuse after Kurt Zouma was subjected to vile abuse online.

The defender was racially abused on Twitter after his 87th-minute own goal that handed Sheffield United a point from a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge.

Kepa had to haul an exasperated Zouma off the floor
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It comes less than three weeks after Tammy Abraham, who scored twice against the Blades on Saturday, was abused after he missed a penalty in the Super Cup shoot-out defeat to Liverpool.

Lampard, who staunchly criticised his club’s fans in the wake of Abraham’s abuse, says the guilty parties have to be held accountable.

“I am probably going over the ground I did with Tammy before,” he said. “Firstly it is a person that does it, wherever they are hiding from, and secondly we have to look at social media and the platforms and give them some accountability to actually have people register who can be chased down for it.

“I think it is simple, until we get to that, and no matter how horrible that conversation is, we get tired talking about it.

The youngster could not prevent the ball from hitting the back of the net
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“Until there is some culpability, anyone can say anything to anyone. It’s not just racism, it could be calling them names, homophobia, sexism, it could be anything.

“If we allow it, then unfortunately in modern society it is out there and it has to be dealt with.”

Lampard confirmed Chelsea intend to meet with some of the social media platforms to help try and stamp the abuse out.

“I think we have plans to do that,” he added. “Everyone knows with how I speak and the way the club act consistently where we want to go with it. Any player, we are clear about that.”

Liverpool move above Man City at top of Premier League table with 13th straight win

31 Aug

Liverpool will finish August on top of the Premier League after extending their 100 per cent record to four matches with a 3-0 win at Burnley.

An own goal by Chris Wood, deflecting in Trent Alexander-Arnold’s cross, was added to by Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino as Jurgen Klopp’s side regained first place little more than a couple of hours after Manchester City had briefly usurped them.

Sadio Mane scored again for Liverpool, but his evening soon turned sour
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It was an afternoon of firsts for the Reds. First time the club have won 13 consecutive league matches. First time they have have won their opening four matches in back-to-back seasons. First clean sheet of the season. And Firmino becoming the first Brazilian to score 50 Premier League goals.

But this was a different type of victory to what had gone before, grinding it out before moving through the gears when they spotted the right opportunity.

In a reversal of fortunes from last weekend, when they overwhelmed Arsenal early on at Anfield, Liverpool found they were the ones having to see off the early hustle and bustle from their hosts.

Wood sprang the offside trap to force Adrian into a save after just 80 seconds and it was apparent boss Sean Dyche had identified that as the most effective way of both negating and threatening the leaders.

Firmino strokes home Liverpool’s third and his 50th in the Premier League
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There was no risk of them being caught by Liverpool’s high-tempo, high press as they were not interested in having any possession in their final third, always looking for the quick pass forward to Wood or Ashley Barnes.

It presented a testing 25-minute period for Klopp’s side as, with the ball either in the air or heading towards their own goal, they spent a fair amount of time backtracking and regrouping as they tried to gain a grip on the game.

Alexander-Arnold had to clear over his own crossbar under pressure from Barnes from an Aaron Lennon cross but the opening spell was not entirely without Liverpool chances.

Nick Pope got the very slightest of fingertip touches to help Mohamed Salah‘s shot onto a post and then almost gifted him a goal when his legs diverted Jordan Henderson’s ball over the top from a one-two, with Salah onto the Liverpool forward who watched the rebound roll wide.

Having patiently probed, the opening goal in the 33rd minute was a complete fluke.

Alexander-Arnold’s attempted cross took a glancing blow off Wood’s shoulder and ballooned over Pope and went into the top corner.

Their second, however, was all too familiar as for once Burnley tried to play from the back and Ben Mee was pressured into losing possession to Firmino, who teed up Mane to slot home his fourth in as many games.

Burnley employed the same tactics at the start of the second half, but with a two-goal cushion and 45 minutes’ experience under their belt Liverpool’s players were more wise to it.

Their first chance of the half did not arrive until the 72nd minute when James Tarkowski headed over from close range.

Had that gone in it would have led to an uncomfortable finish but Liverpool strolled towards full-time, with Firmino launching and finishing the counter-attack with Salah to score the third.

Four wins from four and a two-point cushion over City from the opening month of the campaign. Even the demanding Klopp could not have asked for any more.

Micky Gray insists Manchester United are ‘miles off’ rivals City and Liverpool and suggests Ole Gunnar Solskjaer won’t see out the season

31 Aug

Micky Gray insists Manchester United are ‘so far off the mark’ in terms of rivals Liverpool and Manchester City.

And the former Sunderland and England defender suggested Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may not see out the season in charge.

The Norwegian remained composed as he watched the Red Devils labour to a 1-1 draw against 10-man Southampton in the early kick-off on Saturday.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may well find himself under pressure soon
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While an optimistic United fan may suggest it is a point gained, the realist will suggest the chasm between title challengers Liverpool and reigning champions Manchester City is widening on a weekly basis.

And Gray echoed these sentiments, suggesting the gap between United and their rivals goes beyond simply a points tally and that Solskjaer could well pay for the club’s demise.

He said: “It should never have got into that situation in the first place, but it seems to have happened over the past four or five seasons where they [Manchester United] haven’t really looked like challenging for the title.

“Yes they have won the Europa League and the cup competitions, but they are a million miles away from where they need to be.

“I think it’s going to take another three or four transfer windows before they actually get to where they want to be.

“Man City and Liverpool right now are just streets ahead of Manchester United and you have got to look at the sides who we will probably class as the ‘Top Six’ – they are better than Man United on a weekly basis.

“You never know what you are going to get from this Man United squad at the moment. Yes they have got good individual players, but they are so far off the mark it’s untrue.

“They can’t get it right with the managers; I don’t think Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is the guy to take them forward so do they need to replace him?

“Going into the second half of the season in January, I suppose that we will have to wait and see what the results are like when we get to that position.

“But that is a long process – that is not something that is going to get fixed overnight.”

Formula Two driver Anthoine Hubert killed in devastating Belgium GP feature race crash, aged 22

31 Aug

French driver Anthoine Hubert has been killed in a Formula Two accident at the Belgian Grand Prix.

The 22-year-old died following a 160mph collision at the high-speed Spa-Francorchamps track.

 

Hubert raced for the British-owned Arden team

Hubert raced for the British-owned Arden team, founded and run by Garry Horner, the father of Red Bull team boss Christian Horner.

He lost control of his car on the exit of the notorious uphill Eau Rouge corner before slamming into the far-side barrier. The Frenchman flew off the tyre wall and slid across the circuit before he was hit head on by the unsuspecting American Juan-Manuel Correa.

The severity of the incident was instantly obvious. Debris littered the tarmac and the official TV feed cut away from the scene, while there were no replays of the accident.

Emergency crews rushed to one of motorsport’s most recognisable corners, but one hour and 28 minutes after the second-lap accident Hubert was pronounced dead at the on-track medical centre.

Correa was airlifted to Liege Hospital, 40 miles to the north west of the circuit in the Ardennes. It is understood that the American, 20, has broken his legs and was sedated at the scene. Giuliano Alesi, the son of former Ferrari driver Jean Alesi, was also involved but escaped without injury.

The Formula Two race, which acts as the feeder championship to Formula One, followed the conclusion of qualifying for the F1 grand prix which saw Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc secure pole position ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton.

A statement released by the sport’s governing body, the FIA, read: “The Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) regrets to advise that a serious incident involving cars #12, #19 and #20 occurred at 17:07 on 31/08/19 as a part of the FIA Formula 2 Sprint Race at Spa-Francorchamps, round 17 of the season.

“The scene was immediately attended by emergency and medical crews, and all drivers were taken to the medical centre.

The 22-year-old died following a 160mph collision at the high-speed Spa-Francorchamps track

“As a result of the incident, the FIA regrets to inform that the driver of car #19, Antoine Hubert (FRA), succumbed to his injuries, and passed away at 18:35.”

The fatal crash occurred less than an hour after Lewis Hamilton had qualified for Sunday’s race. Hamilton, who crashed out of final practice at 140mph at the Fagnes chicane on Saturday morning, is due to line up from third on the grid.

In an emotional post to social media, the five-time world champion highlighted the dangers of the sport.

Lewis Hamilton walks away uninjured from his heavy crash at Spa
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“This is devastating,” the 34-year-old wrote. “God rest your soul, Anthoine. My prayers and thoughts are with you and your family today.

“If a single one of you watching and enjoying this sport think for a second what we do is safe you are hugely mistaken.

“All these drivers put their lives on the line when they hit the track and people need to appreciate that in a serious way because it is not appreciated enough.

“Not from the fans, nor some of the people actually working in the sport. Anthoine is a hero as far as I’m concerned for taking the risk he did to chase his dreams. I’m so sad that this has happened. Let’s lift him up and remember him. Rest in peace, brother.”

A moment’s silence is set to take place ahead of Sunday’s race to honour a driver highly regarded in the motor racing world.

Hubert was the reigning GP3 champion and had already won twice in F2 this season. He was a member of the Renault driver academy.

Renault’s F1 team boss Cyril Abiteboul said: “Anthoine was a bright young man. His performance and conduct on and off track was that of a true gentleman and it was a pleasure and honour to have had him within our academy.

“He will be sorely missed. His spirit will remain with the team and we will race in his memory.”

Boxing news: Billy Joe Saunders reportedly set to defend world title on undercard of KSI vs Logan Paul rematch

31 Aug

Billy Joe Saunders will reportedly make the next defence of his WBO super-middleweight world title in bizarre circumstances.

After signing with Eddie Hearn earlier this month, it is now claimed that the two-weight champion will return on the undercard of KSI vs Logan Paul II.

Billy Joe Saunders is a two-weight WBO champion
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According to the Independent, the YouTubers are set to turn pro after having a white collar six-rounder last year which ended in a draw.

It was reported a couple of weeks ago that Hearn would be promoting the internet sensations’ second fight, which is being planned for November 9 at the Staples Center in LA.

Now further information has come out stating that BJS will make a title defence on the undercard, with hot prospect Devin Haney also expected to feature.

KSI vs Logan Paul I was a draw
KSI vs Logan Paul

In their first fight, KSI and Logan Paul sold out England’s Manchester Arena and they’re expected to repeat the feat Stateside.

Hearn, the British boxing promoter who represents many of the sport’s big names, including Anthony Joshua, has previously expressed an interest in the YouTuber fights.

After watching KSI’s first sell-out event against Joe Weller at the Copper Box, then the Manchester Arena success, he has kept a keen eye on their progress and is now making his move.