Tag Archives: draw

Ashwin takes six-for in Surrey draw with Somerset

The make up of Division One of the LV= Insurance County Championship is finalised for when the competition resumes in late August; Hampshire, Lancashire, Nottinghamshire, Somerset, Warwickshire and Yorkshire will compete in top tier for 2021 title

Last Updated: 14/07/21 7:27pm

Ravi Ashwin will feature for India in the five-match Test series against England starting on August 4

Ravi Ashwin will feature for India in the five-match Test series against England starting on August 4

Ravichandran Ashwin stepped up his preparations for India’s Test series against England by taking 6-27 as Surrey’s LV= Insurance County Championship match against Somerset ended in a final-day draw.

Ashwin, making a one-off appearance for Surrey, helped skittle Somerset for just 69 in their second innings, with left-arm spinner Dan Moriarty (4-20) picking up the other wickets on a Kia Oval pitch offering plenty of help to the slower bowlers.

It left Surrey needing 259 to win in 57 overs; England’s Jack Leach followed up his 6-43 in Surrey’s first innings with another wicket, but the hosts safely reached 106-4 when the teams shook hands for a draw at 5pm, with Jamie Smith 46 not out.

Somerset had already confirmed their place in Division One for the remainder of the competition, while Surrey will slot into Division Two.

Joining Somerset in the top-tier will be Hampshire and Warwickshire as they confirmed their spots in Division One on the final day of their respective matches with Gloucestershire and Worcestershire.

Hampshire qualified with a seven-wicket win over Gloucestershire in their Group 2 clash at Cheltenham.

They were made to work for it as Tom Lace’s 118 led 126 overs of second-innings resistance before Gloucestershire were eventually bowled out for 310, leaving Hampshire with a target of just 54 to chase after tea.

Defeat ended Gloucestershire’s dreams of a maiden Championship title as they missed out on a top two finish despite winning five matches – only Yorkshire have won as many. Three heavy defeats from their final four games – taking a total of just six points from those losses – ultimately cost them.

As for Warwickshire, they secured the draw they needed from their final Group 1 game against Worcestershire to book a spot in Division One.

Half centuries from Rob Yates (88) and first-innings century-maker Pieter Malan (77no) saw the Bears comfortably overturn a first-innings deficit of 52 and reach 215-2 in their second dig before the two sides shook hands on a stalemate.

Only 21 wickets fell in four days on the flattest of pitches and Worcestershire’s hope that the wicket would turn – they played three spinners in Ish Sodhi, Josh Baker and Brett D’Oliveira – proved to be unfounded.

Worcestershire will now have to contend with a place in Division Three after drawing their opening five games and winning only one.

Nottinghamshire clinched top spot in Group 1 as they played out a draw with Durham on day four of their match at Emirates Riverside.

Notts had already guaranteed their spot in the new Division One for the second half of the season courtesy of bonus points gained in the contest, but this result now sees them enter as Group 1 champs.

Durham were set a target of 381 to chase on the final day after bowling Notts out for 217 in their second innings – Scott Borthwick claiming 4-32.

The hosts’ hopes of forcing a victory were slim to say the least, and they opted to bat out the day for the draw, finishing on 188-4. They will be participating in Division Two in the next phase of the competition.

In Group Two, Middlesex claimed just a second County Championship win of the season against Leicestershire at Merchant Taylors’ School, with acting captain Tim Murtagh leading the way.

The 39-year-old veteran took 4-36 before limping away from the action just prior to the 121-run win being secured, Leicestershire coming up well short in their pursuit of 293 – despite 52 from Josh Inglis.

James Harris weighed in with 3-50 as Leicestershire were bundled out for 171, this after Stephen Eskinazi had made 66 in the hosts’ second innings of 196.

Both sides will play in Division Three when the Championship resumes.

In Group Three, Glamorgan were frustrated by Northamptonshire‘s middle order as the two teams shared a draw in Cardiff.

The home side declared on their overnight score of 462-4 for a first-innings lead of 247 runs and, as Northamptonshire stuttered to 52-3 inside their opening 11 overs, Glamorgan were firm favourites for victory.

Such a win would have been remarkable given the length of time lost to rain over the first two days, but an unbeaten 71 from Rob Keogh – whose innings came in two parts after he retired on 50 to attend his late grandmother’s funeral service online – steadied the Northants innings and Harry Gouldstone’s 67 not out made the game safe.

The two teams will compete in Division Two when the County Championship season resumes on August Bank Holiday Monday.

Elsewhere, Kent clung on for a draw in their match with Sussex at Canterbury after an engrossing final day’s play.

Jack Carson took 3-87 and Sean Hunt 2-48 for Sussex, but despite a cluster of wickets in the final hour, Sussex were unable to polish off Kent’s tail, with the home side finishing on 257-7 – Hastings-born Harry Finch hitting 115 against his home county

Sussex had earlier declared on 332-4, setting Kent a target of 349 to win. The home side’s reply got off to a desperate start when Ollie Robinson had Joe Gordon caught behind for a duck in the first over, but Finch anchored the innings and though he was one of a cluster of late wickets to fall, Kent clung on for a draw.

The result leaves Sussex bottom of Group Three while Kent are fifth, meaning both sides will compete in the third tier for the remainder of the campaign.

Finally, in the Roses clash between Yorkshire and Lancashire at Emerald Headingley, no play was possible on the final day due to a wet outfield.

Play had also been suspended on day three after Yorkshire’s Dominic Leech suffered a nasty leg injury on the offending outfield deemed “unfit and unsafe”.

Both teams will resume the season in Division One, having finished first and second in Group Three.

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This post originally posted here SkySports | News

Speaking at CPAC, the South Dakota governor and potential White House contender tried to draw a sharp contrast between her and her possible 2024 opponents

“We’ve got Republican governors across this country pretending they didn’t shut down their states; that they didn’t close their regions; that they didn’t mandate masks,” said the potential 2024 White House contender as she drew an implicit but obvious contrast to leaders like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who took a more restrictive approach in their states. “Now I’m not picking fights with Republican governors. All I’m saying is that we need leaders with grit. That their first instinct is the right instinct.”
“Demand honesty from your leaders and make sure that every one of them is willing to make the tough decisions,” added Noem, who repeatedly touted her hands-off approach to Covid-19 throughout her speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference — highlighting the fact that she never ordered a “single business” to close. “South Dakota did not do any of those (measures). We didn’t mandate. We trusted our people and it told them that personal responsibility was the best answer.”
Even when cases surged in her state last November, Noem refused to mandate masks and chose not to put in the precautionary measures that many other governors were taking to slow the spread of Covid-19. She insisted that her state had been most effective by swiftly identifying and isolating cases. As of this weekend, South Dakota had 230 deaths per 100,000 people, according to data from Johns Hopkins University — ranking the state 10th in that metric among the 50 states. The state had 14,090 cases per 100,000 people, ranking South Dakota with the third highest rate in the nation.
But in an October op-ed in the Rapid City Journal, Noem rejected “mandatory masking” by noting that some had questioned the effectiveness of masks, calling on each family to make “informed decisions for themselves.”
“As I’ve said before, if folks want to wear a mask, they should be free to do so,” she wrote in that piece. “Similarly, those who don’t want to wear a mask shouldn’t be shamed into wearing one. And government should not mandate it.”
She became a star headliner at the CPAC conference in Orlando in February, in part by taking aim at Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease specialist, and insisting that her party could win by more clearly articulating that conservatives “are not here to tell you how to live your life.” To loud cheers, she said: “I don’t know if you agree with me, but Dr. Fauci is wrong a lot.”

Noem’s political future

Her comments Sunday were a shot across the bow from Noem as she positions herself in a field that has been essentially frozen by former President Donald Trump, who is teasing another run for his former office as he falsely claims that his 2020 contest with Joe Biden was rigged.
Noem, who was greeted with a standing ovation at CPAC hours before Trump was slated to speak Sunday, has been defined in part by her intense loyalty to Trump after a year in which she campaigned aggressively to help re-elect him. In a brief exchange with reporters Sunday after her speech, she said she hopes to see Trump run again in 2024. When asked about her own ambitions, she demurred.
“I think he’d be fantastic. He gets up every day and he fights for this country,” Noem said. “Most people when they watched what he and his family went through would be exhausted and quit, out of discouragement. And the fact that he’s still fighting is inspirational to me.”
“Would I run? Oh, I’m not focused on that,” she said when pressed about her White House plans. “I love South Dakota and I worked to come home to South Dakota, so I could be there and be with my people and ride horses for the rest of my life and be perfectly happy.”
When asked whether she would be open to joining Trump on the 2024 ticket as his No. 2, as some GOP voters would like to see her do as a replacement for former Vice President Mike Pence, she said she was “open to going home and putting on my cowboy boots right now. I’ve been in these heels a long time.”

Wimbledon draw: Novak Djokovic vs Jack Draper round one, Roger Federer vs Adrian Mannarino

British teenage wildcard Jack Draper will face world No.1 Novak Djokovic in the first round of Wimbledon. And fellow debutant Fran Jones will start against teenage sensation Coco Gauff.

The 19-year-old Draper is playing in his first ever Grand Slam and won his first two ATP Tour-level matches at Queen’s Club last week.

French Open champion Djokovic will be seeking to equal the male Grand Slam singles record held by Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal in SW19 – and the third leg of a calendar Grand Slam.

And No 6 seed Roger Federer, who is on the other side of the draw from the Serb, will play Frenchman Adrian Mannarino in his first match.

Jones, who suffers from a rare genetic disorder which saw her born with a thumb and three fingers on each hand, and only seven toes, will face American Gauff.

As a 15-year-old, Gauff was the breakout star in 2019 when she beat Venus Williams in the opening round and reached the fourth round.

Andy Murray will play his first singles match at Wimbledon since 2017 against No 24 seed Nikoloz Basilashvili.

British No 1 Dan Evans, who is seeded at Wimbledon for the first time at No 22, faces a tricky openong tie against Spaniard Feliciano Lopez. And No 29 seed Cam Norrie will play Lucas Pouille.

Wildcard Liam Broady faces Italian Marco Cecchinato.

There are three British seeds in the draw for the first time since 1978 when Buster Mottram, Virginia Wade and Sue Barker were all in action.

No 27 seed Jo Konta will start against world No 76 Katerina Siniakova but she is on collision course to face world No 3 Ash Barty in the third round. Heather Watson will start against 2017 US Open champion Sloane Stephens.

Sam Murray Sharan will face Sorana Cirstea while Emma Radacanu plays a qualifier.

No 6 seed Serena Williams, who is making her latest attempt to equal Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam singles titles, will start against world No 100 Aliaksandra Sasnovich.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Wimbledon draw LIVE: Federer could face Djokovic in final, Murray takes on Basilashvili

Wimbledon in numbers

Wimbledon draw RECAP 

Wimbledon draw sets up possible Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic final
– Djokovic takes on British wildcard Jack Draper in the first round while Federer paired with Adrian Mannarino

– Two-time champion Andy Murray goes up against Nikoloz Basilashvili
Serena Williams could face off with Angelique Kerber in round three

– Jo Konta could face Ashleigh Barty at same stage

– British youngster Fran Jones paired with Coco Gauff in first-round thriller

– Defending champion Simon Halep out with injury

11am: Well that’s all we’ve got time for – thanks for joining Express Sport for today’s Wimbledon draw! 

We’ve got plenty to look forward to over the next two weeks and we’ll be covering absolutely everything.

Make sure you visit us again for all the latest goings on in the world of tennis, and sign up for our newsletter to get all the biggest stories straight to your inbox.

Enjoy the rest of your day.

10.55am: And in the women’s, Serena Williams’ projected draw is…

R1: Sasnovich, R2: Hibino/Pera, R3: Kerber, R4: Bencic/Gauff, QF: Svitolina/Pavlyuchenkova, SF: Barty/Andreescu/Azarenka, F: Sabalenka/Kenin/Swiatek

10.50am: So then, the projected draws for the two stand-out names in the men’s draw…

Federer… R1: Mannarino, R2: Gasquet, R3: Norrie, R4: Carreno-Busta, QF: Medvedev, SF: Zverev/Berrettini, F: Djokovic/Tsitsipas

Djokovic… R1: Draper, R2: Anderson, R3: Davidovich Fokina, R4: Monfils, QF: Rublev, SF: Tsitsipas, F: Medvedev/Zverev/Federer

And also for Murray…

R1: Basilashvili, R2: Rinderknech, R3: Shapovalov, R4: Bautista Agut, QF: Stefanos Tsitsipas, SF: Djokovic, F: Medvedev/Zverev/Federer

10.47am: Some absolutely brilliant first-round ties in the ladies’ draw – and that sets up some thrillers in the second and third rounds too.

Nottingham Open winner Konta got to the quarter-finals at the last Wimbledon but hasn’t got past the second round of a Grand Slam since then.

The British women’s No 1 takes on Czech player Siniakova, currently in action at the Bad Homburg Open.

10.43am: Britain’s Heather Watson could take on either Petr Kvitova or Sloane Stephens in round two, if she beats a qualifier in her opening contest.

10.40am: Other notable Wimbledon women’s first round matches…

Kiki Bertens vs Marta Kostyuk 

Anett Kontaveit vs Marketa Vondrousova

Bianca Andreescu vs Alize Cornet

Petr Kvitova vs Sloane Stephens

Heather Watson vs Qualifier

Iga Swiatek vs Su-wei Hsieh

Mihaela Buzarnescu vs Venus Williams

10.36am: What a match! Coco Gauff plays Britain’s Fran Jones in a battle of the youngsters.

Gauff, still only 17, reached the fourth round of the last Wimbledon while Jones, 20, has only ever played one Grand Slam match before this, at the Australian Open earlier this year.

Serena Williams takes on Aliaksandra Sasnovich in round one.

10.32am: Ouch. Not too kind for Great Britain’s Jo Konta.

She takes on Katerina Siniakova in round one but could meet top seed Ashleigh Barty in the third.

Australian Barty is up against Carla Suarez Navarro in the first round.

Serena could face Angelique Kerber in round three too.

10.30am: And we’re underway with the women’s draw.

Serena Williams, still bidding for that record-equalling 24th Grand Slam, could face third seed Elina Svitolina in the quarters.

10.25am: The gentlemen’s singles draw in full…

10.20am: Halle Open winner Ugo Humbert takes on Nick Kyrgios in an exciting first round clash.

Federer faces Adrian Mannarino the Frenchman, who takes on Sam Querrey this evening in the semi-finals of the Mallorca Open.

Federer is a 6-0 against the world No 42 and beat Mannarino in straight sets in the round of 16 at Wimbledon back in 2018.

Elsewhere Matteo Berrettini takes on 2019 quarter-finalist Guido Pella and Cam Norrie, the British No 2, will go head-to-head with Lucas Pouille.

And in the very final pairing, Medvedev takes on Jan-Lennard Struff.

10.15am: That is not a kind first-round pairing for Murray. The pair have never played before but Basilashvili beat Federer in Qatar earlier this year.

Basilashvili went on to win in Qatar in March as well as at the Bavarian Championships in May for his fourth and fifth ATP Tour titles.

10.10am: All of the seeded players are drawn. In the first round…

Djokovic will play British 19-year-old Jack Draper, the world No 250. What a tie that is for the teenager.

British world No 5 Liam Brody is then paired with Italy’s Marco Cecchinato.

Frances Tiafoe takes on Stefanos Tsitsipas while Diego Schwartzman faces Benoit Paire.

British No 1 Dan Evans is drawn out against Feliciano Lopez. The Spaniard has won their only previous meeting.

Two-time champion Andy Murray meanwhile takes on Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili.

10.05am: We already have our potential men’s quarter-finals…

Novak Djokovic vs Andrey Rublev
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Roberto Bautista Agut
Alexander Zverev vs Matteo Berrettini
Daniil Medvedev vs Roger Federer


10.03am: Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer are NOT in the same half as one another. The earliest they can meet in the Championships this year is in the final.

Could the Swiss get that far? We’d all love to see it, wouldn’t we?

Wimbledon draw LIVE

Wimbledon draw LIVE (Image: GETTY)

9.55am: We’re almost ready to get underway with the 2021 Wimbledon Championships draw.

We’re of course without some big names though with Rafael Nadal, Dominic Thiem, Milos Raonic, David Goffin, Kyle Edmund and Stan Wawrinka all not playing in the men’s.

In the women’s there’s no Naomi Osaka, Jennifer Brady or 2019 semi-finalist Barbora Strycova.

But there’s still plenty of exciting talent in action – and we’ll find out who they’re playing in their first matches shortly.

9.50am: Simona Halep is OUT of Wimbledon this year. The injured defending champion, struggling with a calf problem, says: “I gave it everything I had in order to be ready to play Wimbledon and after having such special memories from two years ago, I was excited and honoured to step back on these beautiful courts as defending champion.

“Unfortunately, my body didn’t cooperate and I’ll have to save that feeling for next year. I can honestly say that I’m really down and upset about having to take this decision.

“This period has been difficult but to miss the last two majors has made it even more challenging mentally and physically. We will see what the future holds but I’m hoping it will make me a stronger person and athlete.”

9.40am: Zhizhen Zhang yesterday became the first ever Chinese man in the Open Era to make the main draw of Wimbledon.

The world No 178 saw off Francisco Cerundolo to book his spot at the Championships.

Qualifying second seed Mackenzie McDonald also made it through to the main draw.

9.30am: It’s been a long time since Andy Murray last played at Wimbledon, with his quarter-final defeat to Sam Querrey in 2017 the last time he graced the SW19 grass.

But the 2013 and 2016 champion is back at the All England Club this year and now 34 is relishing it.

“I’ve had so many injuries and so many setbacks you just don’t really know what’s round the corner,” the Scot said.

“I want to approach each tournament and each match that I play like it’s my last one so that I can get the most out of it.

“So that’s why I want to prepare here well. I’m going into the bubble on Wednesday evening, so I’m going to get there early to practice at Wimbledon. Hopefully I’ve got some high-quality practices; I’m practising with [Marin] Cilic today and I practise with [Roger] Federer later in the week.

“I’m just trying to play with high-quality grass-court players to prepare me as best as possible. I don’t want it to be my last Wimbledon; certainly I want to keep playing, I don’t want to stop just now, so, yeah, I want to keep going.”

Wimbledon draw LIVE

Wimbledon draw LIVE (Image: GETTY)

9.20am: Djokovic is the huge favourite to win at Wimbledon this summer, and doing so will see him join Federer and Rafael Nadal on 20 Grand Slam titles.

The Serbian top seed has won both the Australian Open and French Open already this year and is setting his sights on a Golden Slam, which would require all four Slams as well as winning gold at the Tokyo Olympics.

Everything is possible, and I did put myself in a good position to go for the Golden Slam,” said Djokovic.

“But, you know, I was in this position in 2016 as well. It ended up in a third-round loss in Wimbledon.

“This year we have only two weeks between the first round of Wimbledon and the finals here, which is not ideal because you go from really two completely different surfaces, trying to make that transition as smooth as possible, as quickly and efficiently as possible.

So obviously I will enjoy this win and then think about Wimbledon in a few days’ time. I don’t have an issue to say that I’m going for the title in Wimbledon. Of course, I am.”

Wimbledon draw LIVE: Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray to learn SW19 opponents

Wimbledon draw LIVE (Image: GETTY)

9.10am: It’s a welcome return for the Wimbledon Championships, which was forced to take a year off in 2020 due to the global coronavirus crisis.

It was confirmed last week that 50 per cent capacity crowds, up to 21,000 fans, will be allowed into the grounds throughout the two-week tournament.

The men’s and women’s finals on Centre Court next month will be allowed to welcome a full capacity of 15,000 spectators each.

“When Wimbledon was cancelled last year, that was a shot in the gut for our sport. A terrible time,” said three-time Wimbledon champion John McEnroe. “So to have it back is incredible.”

The grass-court Grand Slam gets underway on Monday (June 28) and will conclude on Sunday July 11.

What to expect from a new-look Wimbledon

9am: Good morning and welcome to Express Sport’s live coverage of the 2021 Wimbledon draw.

The men’s and ladies’ singles and doubles main draws will both be conducted this morning, getting underway at around 10am UK time.

Novak Djokovic is the defending men’s champion from 2019 after Wimbledon was cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Djokovic got the better of Roger Federer in a five-set thriller, the longest ever final in the history of the 144-year-old Grand Slam.

In the ladies’ draw, Simona Halep is the title-holder having beaten Serena Williams in the final two years ago.

Halep missed the recent French Open due to a torn calf muscle having not played since retiring against Angelique Kerber at the Madrid Open on May 10.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

BLOG: Austin FC settles for draw during electric home opener at Q2 Stadium

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin was completely Verde on Saturday in celebration of Austin FC’s home debut at Q2 Stadium in north Austin.

After over two hours of celebration by the sellout, home crowd, Austin FC and San Jose settled for a 0-0 draw. The lack of goals doesn’t take away from an electric night at Q2 Stadium.

Over 20,000 fans congregated at Austin’s new home for soccer Saturday night for the start of professional sports in the city.

Below is a full recap from a full day at Q2 Stadium.

Live Blog

10 p.m. Saturday

That’s it. Austin FC will finish at 0-0 with San Jose.

9:55 p.m. Saturday

Once again, Brad Stuver is the man of the match for Austin FC.

9:40 p.m. Saturday

Austin FC has doubled San Jose in shots, but can’t find its moment of magic to take a 1-0 lead. Alex Ring and the rest of Verde are bombarding the San Jose net with 20 minutes remaining in the match.

9 p.m. Saturday

After 45 minutes, everyone at Q2 Stadium needs to take a collective breath. A fast-paced half with multiple primo opportunities for both teams ended without a goal.

Austin FC goalkeeper Brad Stuver was solid again in net, keeping the game scoreless late in the half.

8:50 p.m. Saturday

Austin FC supporters raised the TIFO prior to the home opener Saturday night, which is a banner found in soccer circles around the world.

Austin FC’s TIFO is an homage to several Austin icons like an Armadillo and Willie Nelson.

8:20 p.m. Saturday

Q2 Stadium is rocking as Austin FC kicks off against the San Jose Earthquakes. Check out these videos in the build up to the start of the match.

8:10 p.m. Saturday

Matthew McConaughey + his drum = Perfect Austin FC home opener.

You can read more about Austin FC’s minority owner and Minister of Culture here.

7 p.m. Saturday

Austin FC head coach Josh Wolff is sticking with the XI he knows for the home opener against the San Jose Earthquakes.

6:15 p.m. Saturday

This day is a special celebration for a community of soccer supporters who have fought for a professional soccer franchise in Austin over multiple years.

KXAN’s Kelsey Thompson spoke with several supporters about their feelings as Austin FC makes its home debut at Q2 Stadium.

Read more about their story here.

5:45 p.m. Saturday

Supporter groups began their march to Q2 Stadium for the first time around 5:15 p.m. — accompanied with music by La Murga de Austin.

  • March to the Match led by Austin Anthem at first home game at Q2 Stadium (KXAN Photo/Tim Holcomb)
  • Austin Anthem march to the Austin FC match 6-19-21
  • Austin Anthem march to the Austin FC match 6-19-21
  • Austin Anthem march to the Austin FC match 6-19-21

5 p.m. Saturday

Austin FC fans enter Q2 Stadium for the first time!

4 p.m. Saturday

If you’re heading to the stadium and are worried about traffic, here’s the KXAN traffic map with the latest backups around Q2 Stadium.

The best traffic advice for Saturday afternoon is to avoid MoPac Expressway North.

If you’re coming from downtown Austin, try Burnet Road. If you’re coming from the east, take U.S. Highway 183 to Burnet Road. If you’re driving from the west, consider exiting on U.S. 183 to Braker Lane and taking it to The Domain.

Traffic inside of The Domain is already showing up red on the maps as of 4 p.m. Saturday.

2:50 p.m. Saturday

Sweet pup Geraldine is the first honorary Austin FC mascot from Austin Pets Alive!

The club and Austin Pets Alive! are partnering to help promote and raise the profile of dog adoption in a first-of-its-kind program in which dogs available for adoption will serve as honorary Austin FC mascots at each home match.

You can read more about the partnership here.

2:30 p.m. Saturday

This is the way to tee off the third round of the U.S. Open. Check out former Texas Longhorns golfer Dylan Frittelli’s Austin FC jersey swag on the first tee Saturday at Torrey Pines in California.

Also, Frittelli striped that drive.

Author: Andrew Schnitker
This post originally appeared on KXAN Austin

England boss Gareth Southgate has three players who need dropping after flat Scotland draw

England are back to being England again. This was meant to be the year football came home but, after drawing with Scotland on Friday night, the country is back to being in a state of despair. So Express Sport will now take a look at three players who need dropping after the dire result, with Gareth Southgate now preparing for Tuesday’s showdown with the Czech Republic.

Harry Kane

Let’s start with the obvious.

Harry Kane was meant to be England’s saviour, the player to propel them to Euro 2020 glory after sparkling for Tottenham last term.

But, after two matches in the competition so far, the Spurs hitman looks a shadow of his usual self.

Kane was abysmal against Scotland on Friday night, managing just 19 touches, a 63 per cent pass completion rate and no shots on target.

And it spoke volumes about his display that, with England needing a goal, Southgate hooked him instead – bringing on Marcus Rashford in his place.

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Mason Mount

Mason Mount is a talent.

But he’s failed to bring his Chelsea form to the international stage at Euro 2020, producing two anonymous performances in the competition so far.

Mount should, therefore, be used off the bench instead.

The Chelsea star has the potential to shine there and, by dropping him, it would allow Southgate to bring Jack Grealish into the fold.

Grealish was unable to break Scotland down after his introduction but did, at least, pose a threat. Which was more that can be said for Mount, who remains quality – but in need of a rest.

Southgate defends cautious approach

Speaking after the game, England boss Gareth Southgate defended his side’s cautious approach against Scotland.

“It feels difficult in the last 15 minutes of a game like tonight where fans are desperate for you to go forward and abandon shape, because it’s Scotland, it feels like a unique occasion, but we have to still approach it that a point is still an important step towards qualification, which ultimately is the first objective for us,” said Southgate.

“I think in those moments, if we had to chase to win with no consequence for conceding, you might approach it differently; but all the time, it’s a night where it was a bit frantic, it wasn’t a game with a huge amount of control, and you have to make sure that sitting on three points as we were, you manage the tournament as well as the game.

“It’s easy to gamble towards the end, and lose shape, and then end up losing the game in the last five minutes, then you’re kicking yourself for not managing the tournament. I understand we’re at Wembley, we wanted to win, but in the context of the tournament qualification is the most important thing.

“It’s a game where we didn’t hit the levels we wanted to, or need to, and have to accept whatever comes our way, I’ll have to accept whatever comes my way, I totally understand that, but what we need to do is make sure we get behind the players.

“There’s a lot of young players who need the support of everybody – most of them haven’t been involved in a game like that before, they’ll learn a lot and bounce back from it, but they need everybody behind them.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Nationwide offers £1million prize draw – could you be in with a chance to win?

Nationwide is one of the most familiar names on the high street, with the building society helping millions of people. It offers a range of savings products, including its ever-popular FlexDirect account, for Britons to benefit from. But savers with the provider could also benefit from a new monthly prize draw.

Every month, it will give away one prize of £100,000, alongside two prizes of £25,000.

There will be five prizes of £10,000 offered, with a final 8,000 prizes of £100 up for grabs.

Prizes in the Nationwide draw are selected on the second Tuesday of each month.

Then individuals can expect to hear from Nationwide in due course if they have won a prize.

“The launch of our Member Prize Draw is another example to show why it’s worthwhile being a member of Nationwide Building Society. It is about giving even more back to our members on top of the benefits we already offer.

“We believe it’s important that lots of members can benefit from the Member Prize Draw, which is why we are giving more than 8,000 members the chance to share in a prize pot of £1million each month. 

“And what’s more, members don’t need to do anything to take part – as long as they have at least one of our mortgages, savings accounts or current accounts then they are automatically entered.”

There is, however, an option to opt-out which is to be contained on Nationwide’s website for those who do not wish to take part. 

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Finance Feed

Ian Wright lays into Gareth Southgate after Scotland draw: 'I was embarrassed for us'

Ian Wright has criticised England manager Gareth Southgate for making confusing substitutions which left him “embarrassed” after the 0-0 draw with Scotland on Friday. Southgate took off Phil Foden and Harry Kane in the second half at Wembley, but Jack Grealish and Marcus Rashford did not make the difference.

Jadon Sancho, Jude Bellingham and Dominic Calvert-Lewin, among others, all stayed on the substitutes’ bench as England played out a dire draw in front of the home fans.

Scotland arguably had the better of the chances, with Lyndon Dykes and Che Adams more dangerous up front than the hosts’ forwards.

And it was Jordan Pickford – not David Marshall – who was forced to make the best save of the match from Stephen O’Donnell’s well-struck volley in the first half.

England were lacklustre and ponderous in possession and, besides John Stones’ earlier header onto the post, were blunt in attack.

The draw takes England onto four points in Group D ahead of Tuesday’s match against the Czech Republic, but former Arsenal striker Wright was not happy post-match.

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“I was very surprised, the intensity and closing down were not there, they sat back,” he said on ITV’s coverage.

“I think they enabled Scotland to build themselves into the game, build confidence and in the end, the chances Scotland had, you have to say, we’re quite fortunate to get a point out of that now. Very disappointing.

“The substitutions confused me, I don’t know what to say about that.”

The form of Kane was a big talking point at Wembley, with the England captain unable to affect the game in the final third.

After barely touching the ball, he was substituted in the 74th minute for Rashford and while Wright was worried by what he saw, he placed the blame elsewhere.


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“I think it’s plain to see that he doesn’t look at his best,” he said.

“Let’s face it. You’re looking at the chances created, Reece James coming into the team, one of the best crossers from his position, hardly any crosses, not enough balls into the last third for people to play.

“Why has he taken Foden off for? There’s no way Phil Foden should be leaving the pitch today, for me. It’s very disappointing to see.

“You’ve got someone like Jadon Sancho on the bench, 16 goals, 20 assists this season – he doesn’t even get on and we need to create.

“We can talk about Harry Kane and the chances he could have had, or how many touches he hasn’t had, but at the same time, did we really create enough? Did we have enough?

“We looked like a team, we’re meant to be favourites to win the tournament, it’s embarrassing, I was embarrassed for us today.

“Whatever happens, you’re still meant to be linking up, getting the chances made for him, we’ve got the players to do it.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

England boss Gareth Southgate explains Harry Kane substitution after dire Scotland draw

England boss Gareth Southgate has reacted to his side’s goalless draw with Scotland at Euro 2020. The Three Lions went into the match at Wembley looking to make it two victories from two after edging out Croatia last time out. But that didn’t happen, with the hosts forced to settle for a draw instead.

England won 1-0 against Croatia on Sunday, with Raheem Sterling scoring the only goal of the game to give them all three points.

But they failed to build on it against Scotland, instead being forced to settle for a point at Wembley.

England hit the woodwork through John Stones but, despite the late introductions of Marcus Rashford and Jack Grealish, failed to break Scotland down.

The visitors could have snatched victory themselves if it hadn’t been for Jordan Pickford, who made a sensational stop in the first half to keep the scores level.

And Southgate has now spoken out after the game, admitting England must improve if they’re to win the European Championships for the first time in their history.

“I think it was a frustrating night, we know we can play better,” he said.

“Got to give Scotland credit they defended valiantly and played well.

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“We didn’t do enough to win the game but after that the thing we have to worry about in tournament football after that is we had to make sure we didn’t lose it.

“We know it’s a disappointment for our supporters, but we have to dust ourselves down and move on.”

On substituting Harry Kane in the closing stages, Southgate then added: “We needed more runs in behind, I felt Marcus Rashford would give us that energy, at that point we had got to try and get the win.

“We have to make these decisions based on what we see.

“The whole team can look at ourselves, that starts with me, we’ve got to be better. We didn’t do enough to win the game tonight, not enough attempts on goal, we have to go away and look at that.”


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Kane misfired throughout the game and, speaking afterwards, admitted England weren’t at their best.

“Fair result, fair play to Scotland they defended well,” he said.

“It wasn’t our best performance, but it’s another point closer to qualification and that’s our ultimate goal. We just have to recover and look forward to next game in a few days.”

On being substituted, he then added: “It’s part of the game, the manager felt that was the right decision so you just have to take it.

“It is what it is.

“It was a tough game – Scotland defended really well, made good blocks at the right times when we know no game is going to be easy it’s a European Championship and Scotland are playing for their lives.

“We’ve got another big game in a few days against the Czechs, we want to finish sharp – it’s a point, not what we wanted but it’s one step closer to qualifying.

“One step at a time and we go again.”

Scotland boss Steve Clarke, meanwhile, was delighted with his side’s showing.

“Good night, we played well,” he said.

“We were unfairly criticised after the game on Monday I know I have a good group of players and they showed that tonight, delighted for my players and staff.

“We had chances to win, England had moments as well, looking at this you wouldn’t have known which is the favourite which is a credit to us. The most pleasing thing was we played when we had the ball and created a number of chances.”

Former Chelsea star Pat Nevin hailed the result as a ‘massive point’ for Scotland, who remain in the mix to qualify for the knockout stages.

“Am I allowed to say I’m incredibly proud of those players out there?” he told BBC Sport.

“They were absolutely phenomenal from start to finish.

“The bravery out there, standing up to a lot of world class players but they did not look fazed at any point.

“You can learn a lot from what’s going on in the stands. The England fans are leaving quietly while the Scotland fans are dancing, they are singing and they are roaring the players on. It is a brilliant moment for them.

“It’s only a point – but it’s a massive point. Scotland wanted to come here and be competitive. You can’t argue after that that they are anything other than competitive at this level.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed