Justin Thomas wins US PGA and confirms years of potential

The American Justin Thomas claimed the US PGA, his first major victory, by two strokes, to add to the three tournaments he has already won this season

What a role reversal. Three weeks ago, as a close friend and Open Championship housemate, Justin Thomas swigged from the Claret Jug won by Jordan Spieth. Perhaps this part in a Sunday blowout the final piece of inspiration needed by Thomas to press home years of promise. Now he, the US PGA Champion, can fill the Wanamaker Trophy with whatever he prefers. The running of first-time major wins is now eight from the last nine such events.

On a ferociously hot, gripping North Carolina afternoon Thomas prevailed by two, at eight under par. He has made something of a habit of following in the footsteps of Spieth. In 2013, a year after Spieth led the University of Texas to the college golf championship, Thomas did likewise for the University of Alabama.

Still, it has taken until recent times for the 24 -year-old Thomas to carry such form properly into the professional ranks. Before this major victory he had won three times on the PGA Tour this season. At one of those tournaments, in Hawaii, Thomas shot 59.

There was never even a remote chance of a recur performance here, which owes all is Thomass ability to emerge from a tense scrap. At 5pm on Sunday he was part of a five-way tie for the result. Merely half an hour earlier Hideki Matsuyama had led the championship by one.

The momentum shift in Thomass favour came on the 13 th, where he chipped in for a birdie to move to eight under par. He maintained that position until the penultimate hole, where a glorious tee shot set up a 14 ft birdie opportunity. Thomas converted, delivering a fatal blow to the already fighting Matsuyama in the process.

Thomas took to the 18 th with a two-stroke leading, with even a drive into a bunker insufficient to halt his victory marching. By this juncture the rest were scaling an ice mountain in slippers. Thomass fourth round was of 68 shots.

Matsuyamas one-over-par 72 an outcome maybe linked to the intense pressure attached to another attempt at becoming the first male Japanese major win ensured a share of fifth which does not fairly reflect his earlier contribution. Francesco Molinari, Patrick Reed and Louis Oosthuizen shared second. Reed and Molinari had returned Sunday 67 s.

Rickie Fowlers four birdies in succession from the 12 th tee raised his hopes of ending his major wait. Yet having reached five under, Fowler required more from Quail Hollows famous Green Mile closing stretch. There was to be no continuation of the surge.

What a week this proved for Jordan Smith, the 24 -year-old from Bath. Two years ago, he did not even have status on the tour immediately underneath the European Tour. Smith duly progressed to the point of winning the European Open on his previous start, thereby earning a maiden major start. How Smith made the most of it: his Sunday 68 meant an aggregate of one under and a guaranteed return to the US PGA next year.

Im still pinching myself, Smith acknowledged. Ive had some really good groups, enjoyed the whole experience and objective up playing some really good golf, so Im happy.

Smiths total was one better than Paul Casey and two ahead of Ian Poulter. Jason Day put aside his disastrous eight at the final hole on Saturday to post a one-under 70, for the same 72 -hole tally.

Dustin Johnson Sunday 67, which earned him a top-2o finish, evoked memories of his opening to 2017. The world No1 has struggled, by his own admission, since toppling down a flight of steps the day before the Masters.

Going into Augusta Im playing the best golf of my career, Johnson said. Everything was working very well. Then regrettably I didnt get to play the Masters and Ive fought a little bit this whole summertime. Its all due to what happened right before Augusta, slipping and hurting my back.

I feel like the game is coming around. Its starting to feel a lot better. Ive get confidence in it again. Its close to being really good.

Spieth signed off with a 70 and words of encouragement from his caddie, Michael Grellar. Spieths total was plus two, with the Texan now set for a breach before beginning an attack on the FedEx Cup he won in 2015.

Michael is telling me strolling off 18 today, he goes: Hey, only want you to know thats a great year in the majors, Spieth said. He guesses Im frustrated maybe with how the coming week ran. But we won a major. We had a chance to win at Augusta, too.

The US Open and here I didnt have a chance to win, which is a downer. But overall, when I look back on the year in the major championships, it was fantastic. If I did this every year, I would go down as the greatest ever to play the game.

Spieth was waiting at the back of the 18 th green and therefore among the first to congratulate his contemporary on victory. It is party time again.

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Alexander Zverev beats Roger Federer to win Rogers Cup final

Alexander Zverev kept his winning streak alive with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Roger Federer in the Rogers Cup final on Sunday

Alexander Zverev kept his winning streak alive with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Roger Federer in the Rogers Cup final on Sunday.

The 20 -year-old Zverev, the winner last week in Washington, posted a 10 th straight match victory and aimed the 36 -year-old Federers own winning streak at 16. The German also tied Federer with a fifth tournament victory this year, although Federers haul includes two major titles. Zverev also got even for a loss to Federer at Halle in June and leveled their career head-to-head record at two wins each.

Zverev used some sharp groundstrokes to keep Federer from taking control early and got the only service breaking he needed to win the first set. Zverev escaped a break phase at 1-0 in the second defined with consecutive hotshots, then transgressed a mistake-prone Federerfor a 4-3 result and served out the match.

Zverev, the youngest Rogers Cup finalist since Novak Djokovic in 2007, was coming off an emotional victory over Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov in the semi-finals. Federer missed a chance to tie-in Ivan Lendl for second place all day with 94 tournament wins. Jimmy Connors results with 109.

In the doubles final, fifth-seeded Frenchmen Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut beat seventh-seeded Rohan Bopanna of India and Ivan Dodig of Croatia 6-4, 3-6, 10 -6.

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Kevin Kisner leads US PGA but players make hard work on day three

Kevin Kisner is on seven under par, one ahead of Chris Stroud and Hideki Matsuyama, after the third round at Quail Hollow of a US PGA that has not been easy on the eye

The 99 th playing of the US PGA Championship has sporting parallels. There is, for example, the grim scoreless depict that football hipsters insist is wonderfully entertaining on grounds of defensive performance. Factor in a dour five-day cricket Test that ends without a winner and a fuller picture can be drawn.

Somebody will prevail at this major eventually but the event has already triggered a debate. Those seeking spine-tingling amusement need look elsewhere. On a tense third day, during which standing still was valuable to many of those in the upper echelons of the leaderboard, golf purists insisted this is what major championship play should be all about. It is, though, a hard sell. The margin between good and bad shoots has at times been impossible to decipher.

To the basic particulars. Kevin Kisners 72 means he results, by one, at seven under. Chris Stroud, the world No203, and Hideki Matsuyama are those closest.

The latest sign that Matsuyama may wilt under the pressure of trying to deliver a first major win for Japan arrived as he slipped to a 73. He is, though, very much part of this equation. Justin Thomas, who fell short at the US Open in June, afforded himself redemption with a 69 which moved him to five under.

Golfs administrators likely cannot wins. They would be chided for supervising a major setup that delivers the various kinds of target golf and low scores that are common on the PGA Tour. Brutal exams as delivered most commonly at the US Open have also been subject to widespread howl. Yet surely it is feasible to have something in the middle. Quail Hollows treacherous greens, combined with iffy pin placements, have thus far ensured a spectacle which is unlikely to appeal to the broader masses. On a couple of pits, it has been stretched, told Jordan Spieth after his third round, in submitting his application to join the diplomatic corps. Exhibit A: the 1st, which did not yield a single birdie from 75 Saturday players.

Of course, whoever strolled off with the Wanamaker Trophy will not devote a second thought to external sentiment. Kisner and Stroud are attempting what would be stunning successes given their positions in golf. The former has never recorded a major top 10. Of those in close pursuing merely Louis Oosthuizen, at minus five, has a major to his name. Jason Day was in the same category before encountering comedy chaos on the 18 th.

Rickie Fowler played the last three holes in four over, a 73 meaning he sits at one under. Paul Casey had a similarly dire finish, meaning a 74 for even aggregate. Patrick Reeds 69 moved him to minus two.

Given that Spieth had forcibly insisted there would be no added pressure attached to this, a first go at a career grand slam while seeking to be the youngest player to complete it, he would not be heading for the bottom of a whisky bottle upon realisation victory would pass him by. Spieth started day three at the same figure over par and remained there, a scenario affected in no small proportion by an ugly doubled bogey at the last.

I didnt have it written in a diary from when I was young that I need to win a career grand slam as the youngest ever, said Spieth of the broader painting. That wasnt the goal. The goal was to try and win them all. The goal was to try and get on the PGA Tour and then from there see what happens. And I will have a lot of opportunities.

The PGA Championship I think is going to be the most severe for me. If we look historically back on my career, I guess I will play this tournament worse than the other three majors simply in the way that its set up.

I feel like my game genuinely suits the other three majors maybe more than a PGA Championship. But I believe we can play anywhere and can win anywhere. Its merely a matter of having everything in sync at the right time.

Typically, Spieth will not lack Sunday motivation. We could violate the season into quarters, he added. This is the start of the fourth quarter.

At the US Open on Sunday, I was out of it but I gathered a little something off that round that led to two wins in two tournaments after that including a major. Just one round like that can do that. Thats what Im looking to do here.

Rory McIlroy had likely come to terms with the year not yielding another major title even before his third round. The Northern Irishman has suffered all manner of interruptions in recent months, with a rib problem still affecting him. Im looking forward to 2018, told McIlroy with a rueful smile after posting a 73. Hercule Poirot is scarcely required to discover the roots of the four-times major champs problems; 30 putts on Saturday emerged from a total of merely 49 ft.

A figure that bothered McIlroy more, and rightly, related to hour. Five hours and 20 minutes out there in that heat was a little too long for my penchant, he said. For tournament organisers to allow such a situation, let alone contribute to it, represents a gross dereliction in respect of creating this sports appeal. Of that there can, at least, be no doubt.

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Sixteen-year-old killed when log falls on him during high school football drill

A high school football player lifting a large log with team-mates as part of a Navy Seals-style drill was hit in the head by the log and succumbed Thursday

A high school football player lifting a large log with team-mates as part of a Navy Seals-style drill was hit in the head by the log and died Thursday, creating the issue of accommodating such military training to young athletes.

Joshua Mileto, a 16 -year-old Sachem East High School junior, and about five of his team-mates were carrying the log overhead when the accident happened at a preseason workout camp supervised by a half-dozen coach-and-fours, Suffolk County police said.

The 5ft 6in, 134 lb broad receiver and defensive back was declared dead later at a hospital.

Sachem East graduate Carlin Schledorn, who played football as a junior, told carrying the log about 12 ft( 3.7 m) long and the diameter of a utility pole was a squad constructing exercise.

Its very big. Its like a tree, and its a challenge for people who weightlift, he said. Five or six people do it at once. I feel horrific for the team and coaches because I know them, and they are all great men.

School officers, including the head coach-and-four, did not comment on the exercise.

A person at Miletos home declined to speak with reporters.

Classmate Olivia Cassereli told Mileto cared about everyone else.

He put others before himself, and everyone loved him and was friends with him, said Cassereli, who called him her best friend.

Some colleges and other high schools around the country have incorporated log-carrying drills and other military-inspired exercisings into their football preparations in recent years, sometimes bring back Seals to teach and motivate. Some coach-and-fours and players say the tough tasks help forge teamwork.

But Douglas Casa, of the University of Connecticuts Korey Stringer Institute, which works to improve safety for athletes, questioned the wisdom of having teens perform training exercises that involves carrying a heavy object and that was developed for Navy Seals, potentially a very different clientele.

Theres so much potential for things to go wrong that I would really want people to think twice before doing something like that, said Casa, the institutes executive director.

Football, at all levels, has become still more safety-conscious in recent years amid scrutiny of head injuries in the athletic. In college football, for example, the NCAA this year barred the two-a-day contact practices that coaches once used to toughen up their squads in the preseason, though many squads had ended them already.

For high schools in Suffolk County, offseason practises are permitted as long as they are not mandated and are open to everyone, said Tom Combs, executive director of the athletic organization that supervises high school sports in the county.

What exercisings that are conducted are the privy of the school district and individuals running the workouts, he said.

In an unrelated incident, another player fell and hit his head Wednesday at the school during training, police told. His injuries were not life-threatening.

Sachem superintendent Dr Kenneth Graham widened condolences to Miletos family and friends and told support services will be offered for as long as needed.

The squads training officially starts Monday, and the football season starts in September.

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Stephen Curry overcomes slow start to card 4-over 74 in professional golf debut

The two-time MVP bogeyed three of his first five pits but finished strong for a 74 at the Web.com Tours Ellie Mae Classic

Stephen Curry pumped his right fist, created his arms in the air with club in hand and dedicated a firm shoulder bump to caddie Jonnie West, his golf partner on road journeys with the Golden State Warriors.

After three bogeys in five pits of his professional golf debut, a birdie was worthy of celebration.

There was the animated, confident Steph that NBA fans know so well, the two-time league MVP ultimately feeling it and stimulating the tough shootings on the challenging course at TPC Stonebrae while competing in a tournament one step below the PGA Tour.

With a bogey on the last pit, he had a respectable 4-over 74.

It was an amazing experience, Ive been looking forward to this since I found out and to ultimately hit my first shoot in tournament play was a really, really nervous moment but it was everything I hoped for, Curry told. If you told me I was going to shoot 74 going into the first round Id take that all day, every day. Im pretty happy with it.

Curry described 300 -plus fans to the Web.com Tours Ellie Mae Classic, where Hall of Fame wide receiver Jerry Rice has played a few days in the past.

The star point guard of the champion Warriors high-fived fans between holes on the picturesque course providing panoramic views overlooking San Francisco Bay, and he chatted with the other two in his threesome, Sam Ryder and defending champ Stephan Jaeger. Both will be on the PGA Tour next season.

Curry, who munched on a breakfast sandwich at the green of his first pit, missed badly on his opening tee shot. The drive landed off a mound and ricochetted perfectly into the beaker holder of a golf cart.

Not quite as spot-on as those signature pregame tunnel shootings at Oracle Arena or the jaw-dropping, buzzer-beating three-pointers from way, route back.

Thats probably a first on the tour. There was a golf cart merely left of my target on pit No1 and it ran right in the beaker holder, Curry said. Not an ideal route to start with calling a rules official over after your first tee shooting. I kind of settled in after that.

On the 15 th fairway, Curry leaned on West, the states members of Golden States front office and son of Hall of Famer Jerry West. Jonnie West also is a member at this course.

Then Curry finished the par-5 15 th by sinking a 5-foot, downhill birdie putt. He stimulated par on No16 then survived a tee shot to the bunker and a near stumble climbing out of the sand on the par-4 18 th and made about an eight-footer to save par.

That prompted a triumphant club tap to his shoe and Curry then held up the ball sporting a big grin.

It was awesome, West said. He handled the nerves of this being his first time in this type of atmosphere pretty well.

Curry began his round on the back nine and when his name was announced on the tee, I could barely feel my hands, I had to try to take a deep breath, he said.

He attained the turn in 2 over.

The top 65 and ties from the 156 -player field will make the cut. Curry, playing on a sponsor exemption and one of three amateurs in the field, was outside the top 140 and five shots below the cut line as the first round was headed for a conclusion.

I want to play better tomorrow. Now that I kind of got the jitters out hopefully that will happen and made a couple more good shots and make a couple more putts, he said.

With so many cameras clicking, cheers and whistlings moments after he struck the ball and hundreds of supporters in No. 30 shirts and Warriors gear, this was no doubt a Strength In Numbers kind of day.

There would be no balls lost, either. Wherever his shoots landed, a big crowd rapidly gathered to get an up-close glimpse of one of basketballs best. One of the biggest bargains in the NBA before, Curry was rewarded last month with a $201 million, five-year contract.

Playing his other sporting passion, Curry got plenty of assistance along the 7,024 -yard, par-7 0 course. Those with homes along the course gathered in groups on decks to catch a hole.

On this day, it was Jaeger making a key assist down the stretch. Waiting at the tee box on their final hole, he took a basketball are subordinate to 14 -year-old Erik Oswald from Southern California for Curry to sign and delivered it back to the giddy teen garmented in a chefs hat who had followed his hoops hero all day.

Unbelievable gallery out here, Curry said, hopefully that continues through the week.

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Trump interview: golf, Brexit and why you don’t hear about Britain any more

Full transcript of last weeks Wall Street Journal interview shows Trump seemed more keen to discuss golf than specifics of post-Brexit trade deal

For Britain it seems to be a occurrence of hes only not that into you. Except when it comes to golf.

Donald Trump seemed less than awestruck when talking about his late mothers homeland in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, find: You dont hear the word Britain any more.

Whereas American anglophiles are stereotypically enamoured of the Beatles, Downton Abbey and the royal family, the US presidents most urgent concern appears to be the implications of Scottish independence for the Open golf championship.

Trump spoke last week to Gerard Baker, the British-born editor of the Journal, which published excerpts of the interview, but the full transcript was merely subsequently obtained by the Politico website and released on Tuesday.

After a discursive debate about healthcare, jobs and their respective households, Baker noted that Trump had tweeted that morning about trade talks with Britain and would like to know whether could provide more details.

The president replied: No, but I can say that were going to be very involved with the UK. I entail, you dont hear the word Britain any more. Its very interesting. Its like , nope.

Brexit-besieged Downing Street will presumably be hoping that Trump meant that the word Britain has lost out to the UK in common usage, rather than that the country itself has fallen into obscurity.

The conversation moved on. Baker remarked that he is English. It was Trumps turn to ask a question about Scottish independence: Is Scotland going to go for the vote, by the way? You dont see it. It would be terrible. They merely went through hell.

Baker indicated that he did not think there would be another freedom referendum. The chairperson, whose mother was from the Hebridean island of Lewis, seemed to dreaded the dissolution of the 310 -year-old union, but not for the usual reasons.

One little thing, he said. What would they do with the British Open if they ever got out? Theyd no longer have the British Open.

The No campaign never thought of that one.

Trump added: Scotland. Maintain it in Scotland.

He and Baker then conversed about golf and the American star Jordan Spieth, whom Trump ranked alongside greats Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus.

The Wall Street Journal editor eventually interjected: Anyway, are you looking forward to doing a trade deal with the UK?

Trump responded: Yeah. I have a great relationship …

When Baker reminded him of the ticking clock of Brexit, the president told: We have a very good relationship. I have a very good relationship with the “ministers “. And we are absolutely looking to do a major trade deal.

Baker followed up: Would the idea be that the trade deal will kick in pretty much as soon as Brexit happens?

Trump said: As soon as its appropriate to have it kick in, utterly. And itll be a big trade bargain much, much more business than we do right now, many, many times.

He went on to criticise the European union as very, very protectionist but ducked a question about doing an agriculture deal with the UK by changing the subject to China. He did indicate he could do a services deal with the UK but again seemed anxious to avoid details.

Baker has denied devoting Trump an easy ride in the Wall Street Journals coverage of his presidency. A spokesperson for the paper told Politico: We published the noteworthy excerpts from the interview. We watched no reason to publish the crosstalk that inevitably accompanies any conversation.

Trump expends numerous weekends playing golf despite previously criticising Barack Obamas similar outings. A new article in Sports Illustrated offers an insight into why.

It reports: Chatting with some members before a recent round of golf, he explained his frequent appearances: That White House is a real dump. Trump is often at his most unguarded among the people who pay for their close proximity to him.

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Manchester United end US tour with underwhelming display in loss to Barcelona

Manchester United shut their pre-season tour of America on a dissonant note by losing 1-0 to Barcelona in what was a pedestrian reveal from Jos Mourinhos outfit

Manchester United closed their pre-season tour of America on a dissonant note by losing this fifth outing in what was a pedestrian present from Jos Mourinhos outfit.

The manager has serially emphasized outcomes do not matter and Uniteds time here is all about fitness and team gelling. Thus he will return home content with the five matches that are really kick-started that process.

Mourinho was however unhappy at his rearguard. It was an open game, we didnt defend well, he told. Im not happy. But in the second half lots of changes for them and for us, but both teams play for the result we tried to equalise, they tried to keep the ball, possession and defend well so in second half the match was positive.

United are due back in Manchester early on Thursday morning and will touch down with four victories under their belt as thoughts turn to the Uefa Super Cup meeting with Real Madrid in Macedonia on 8 August. Mourinhos side face Vlerenga and Sampdoria in their final warm-ups before the trip to Skopje.

As Ernesto Valverde started with Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Surez up top, Ivan Rakiti and Sergio Busquets in midfield, and Javier Mascherano and Marcelo as part of his defence, this was the strongest opponent United faced during their 18 days away.

So after those four previous wins the mission to achieve a clean sweep required what would be Uniteds most impressive victory of the trip.

The challenge began promisingly. Marcus Rashford, operating on the right of Uniteds 4-2-3-1, reached Romelu Lukaku with a ball that skidded towards the striker as he raced into the region. Lukaku connected but the ball was skied over Jasper Cillessens goal.

From here Barca dominated for most of the half though United had their moments. First up was Neymar who followed a dribble by hitting a shot straight-out at David De Gea. Next, Neymar fed Messi and he did the same the No1 spilling this time before recovering.

Suarez now became the most recent Barca player to find space between Uniteds lines. When he violated through the endeavor this time tested De Gea and he saved well, conceding a corner. Messi ran far closer when given another chance, the No10 beating De Gea but not the goalkeepers left post.

United saw Barcas ultra quick pass-and-go hard to stem. They are not the first and will not be the last to do so. And to their credit when they managed to wrest the ball into their possession and rove forward questions were asked of Valverdes unit.

Rashford and Paul Pogba, in particular, were keen to take the contest to Barca. The latter stimulated one buccaneering run down the right that stretched the turquoise rearguard and earlier Pogba had turned Carles Alena neatly before blazing at Cillessen, the keeper beating ball away.

Rashford Uniteds best moment of the stanza. From a position on the left he raced toward objective, beat Surez and Samuel Umtiti, and at close range smacked the ball at Cillessen, who repelled it.

Given Barcas technical superiority, the last thing United wanted was to concede the ball needlessly. Yet they did so by clumsy occur and decide, on occasion, to hoof the ball in the air from a goal-kick.

This, as Pep Guardiola argues, often means it comes back at you quickly. So it was that from a De Gea clearance Neymar was almost instantly in on the Spaniard and United were fortunate they did not concede.

Yet this giving away of ball led to Barcas winner. This time United lost it near the Catalans area and defence quickly turned into attack. Daley Blinds attempted pass went awry, Barca zipped forward, Surez fed Messi, he threaded the ball into Neymars path inside the area, Antonio Valencia hashed a tackle, and the No11 built no mistake.

United went close to allowing a second before half-time via a similar mix-up. Blind again was culpable, this time for a contaminate that dedicated away a free-kick when he downed Messi. The Argentinian took this and flipped the ball towards Surez. Victor Lindelof did well to set his head on the pass but the purposes of the act confounded Chris Smalling and United only just escaped.

Bara deserved the advantage and started the second half holding a result they would not resignation. For Uniteds final 45 minutes Stateside, Mourinho switched the same three players in defense as during the infringe of the 2-0 win over Manchester City in Houston.

Out ran Lindelof, Blind and Smalling, and in arrived Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, and Matteo Darmian. Sergio Romero also replaced De Gea and Marouane Fellaini was on for Michael Carrick.

The good news for United was that the Messi-Surez-Neymar trident was also totally removed. The bad news was proceedings absence their previous stardust. If this killed the high-quality that had been on display, Barca still managed to pulling United around to put Darmian under pressure, the left-back punting the ball into touch.

Andres Iniesta was on for Bara and a genius of a midfielder will have been dismayed at the manner in which one pinpoint pass rebounded off Arda Turan another substitute for momentum to be lost.

To try and pull the match around Mourinho attained two more changes on 62 minutes. Andreas Pereira took the anonymous Henrik Mkhitaryans place and Anthony Martial did the same regarding the similarly ineffective Jesse Lingard.

As De Gea had been, Romero was the busiest of the two keepers. The Argentinian was called into action when Paco Alcacer could shoot from a few yards and he was able to keep his side only a strike behind. At the other end Pereira twice took purpose but could nor beat Cillessen.

At the demise, Rashford might have nicked an equaliser but this would not have been deserved.

Barcelona ( 4-3-3 ): Cillessen; Nelsinho, Umtiti, Mascherano, Alba; Busquets, Rakitic, Alena; Messi, Suarez, Neymar.

Manchester United ( 4-2-3-1 ): De Gea( Romero, ht ); Valencia( Tuanzebe, 84 ), Lindelof( Jones, ht ), Smalling( Bailly, ht ), Blind( Darmian, ht ); Pogba( Fellaini, ht ), Carrick; Rashford, Mkhitaryan( Pereira, 62 ), Lingard( Martial, 62 ); Lukaku.

Yellow: Pogba( 39 ), Fellaini ( 83)

Attendance: 80,162

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Manchester United beat Real Madrid after farcical penalty shoot-out

Jos Mourinhos men predominated on penalties in Santa Clara after Jesse Lingards opener had been cancelled out by Casemiro

Despite Julia Roberts, an Oscar-winning member of Hollywood royalty, measuring her excitement beforehand, there was an under-capacity turnout for this International Champions Cup encounter in Santa Clara, three years after Manchester United and Real Madrid described 109,318 to Michigan Stadium for a pre-season friendly.

Levis Stadium seemed perceptibly under its 68,500 capacity on Sunday, despite the official attendance being given as 65,109. Given Reals, and to a lesser extent Uniteds, appeal to Californias large Latino population, “theres been” questions about why this was not sold-out. That 2014 match in Michigan involved Cristiano Ronaldo who, despite merely entering near the end of the match, was still a describe for US football fans. The forward is not here this time, instead he is in China doing promotional work for Real.

After the match, Jos Mourinho referred to the Santa Clara crowd: I dont know what to say[ about the attendance] – is Sunday the best day? … The cost of tickets? I dont know, Ronaldo not here? I dont know what to say.

On the field United headed into half-time on Sunday 1-0 ahead, courtesy of some dazzling run from Anthony Martial. The broad human careered into Reals area, left Daniel Carvajal and Luka Modric like statues, and squared the ball to Jesse Lingard, who passed the ball past Keylor Navas in Reals goal. The objective lighted up a half that had flitted between either aim, and went moments after a 41 st -minute Lingard shooting flamed wide of Navass left post.

He is a young player, still time to learn, still time to improve, still time to develop, and its also his personality, I can say he is training better than before, hes working harder than before, its a question to bring his talent more in a consistent way, told Mourinho of the 21 -year-old Martial, who is an undoubted talent, but fought last year.

Obviously we want more consistency in his talent, I think today was positive for him, thats why I left him for 90 minutes on the pitching, he was enjoying[ video games] and trying things, its important to try things in these friendly matches so its good for Anthony and his confidence.

Real are always a menace with the ball and when Lucas Vazquez took on Phil Jones in a foot-race towards Sergio Romeros goal the centre-back could be pleased with how he killed the peril. After an early Andreas Pereira corner amounted to nothing for United, Real roved forward for the first time. Carvajal cut into the opponent region and the United defence were alleviated to scramble the ball away.

This was Reals opening game of their tour, while United were on their fourth. Mourinhos men had won all of their previous three, 5-2 against Los Angeles Galaxy, 2-1 against Real Salt Lake, and 2-0 against Manchester City.

Zinedine Zidanes outfit appeared sharp despite their lack of match practise. Gareth Bale sold Marouane Fellaini a dummy and set Carvajal in along the right. Modric buzzed through midfield and pulled strings. And Karim Benzema, the No9, displayed a deft touch.

For United Lingard forced a sharp save from Navas, the No14 lining up along the right. Inside him was Pereira, the Belgian-born Brazilian get a chance at No10, though in a fluid system he and Lingard often interchanged.

On 18 minutes the Ronaldo-less Real burst into life as Benzema and Bale traded flicks and back-heels and divide United open down the left. Afterward in the half, the two combined in similar way. Matteo Darmian may have caught some inspiration from his adversaries: the left-back threaded a trequartista-like ball in behind. Lingard was the intended recipient but he failed to capitalise.

For the second half Mourinho stimulated wholesale changes so that only Martial, Darmian and Fellaini remained. The administrators mood may have soured six minutes in when one replacing, Ander Herrera, limped off with what appeared a hip problem. Mourinho has already lost Juan Mata to an ankle problem on the trip-up so he will hope there is no serious harm to one of his first-choice midfielders.

The Portuguese said: At least[ it must be] very painful because for him to come out it has to be painful, I want to wait but I say to the players no danger in friendly matches, if you feel something, that something is coming, a muscular injury, get out, the result is not important. But he was[ in pain ], maybe a muscle, I dont know.

Scott McTominay, Herreras replacement, was involved in a melee of bodies that led to a Real free-kick near Uniteds area. When the ball rebounded Henrikh Mkhitaryan broke and United seized the initiative. Play moved on and Daley Blind chipped an inviting ball into Romelu Lukaku but the centre-forward could only manage an air-shot.

That incident was typical of video games. The contest was played at a reasonable tempo but quality was often deficient. So, too, was the challenge Victor Lindelf administered on Theo Hernandez in Uniteds area after 69 minutes. The centre-back hacked the No15 down and Kevin Stott, the referee, pointed to the spot. Up stepped Casemiro to rifle the ball into the roof of David de Geas net.

Next Smalling confessed a fouled just outside his area, to the left. Up stepped Luis Miguel Quezada who aimed directly at De Gea, the No1 having to be alert to beat teh ball away and keep the score level.

By the shut Fellaini could look back on a golden opportunity that would have given United victory. McTominay swept in a sweet ball from the right. The Belgians run was clever; his awkwardly booted broad volley was not.

The International Champions Cup rules forced a penalty shoot-out. This proved a curates egg as Martial skied over, Mateo Kovacic missed, McTominay missed, Oscar missed, Mkhitaryan rolled the ball in, Quezada scored, Lindelof missed, Hernandez missed, Blind scored and Casemiro missed.

It meant United won the spot-kick showdown 2-1, though Zidane stated he was satisfied. His squad next take over Manchester City in Los Angeles on Wednesday.

Real Madrid( 4-2-3-1 ): Navas; Carvajal, Varane, Nacho, Marcelo; Kroos, Modric; Vazquez, Isco, Bale; Benzema

Manchester United( 4-2-3-1 ): Romero( De Gea ); Fosu-Mensah( Blind, ht ), Bailly( Lindelof, ht ), Jones( Smalling, ht ), Darmian( Valencia, 78 ); Carrick( Herrera, ht( McTominaym 52 )), Fellaini; Lingard( Mkhitaryan, ht ), Pereira( Pogba, ht ), Martial; Rashford( Lukaku, ht)

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Jordan Spieth weathers Royal Birkdale storm to take control at the Open | Andy Bull

Jordan Spieth holds a two-shot lead after mastering these components but the Texan was just happy to be inside at the end of a typical British summer day

Jordan Spieth got to experience one of the great British traditions at Royal Birkdale, a wet, windy afternoon at the seaside. It was a day out so damp, so dismal, that eventually even the Pollyannas in the crowd telling everyone itll soon blow over had to admit that it was going to do no such thing and to join the scamper for the precious few scraps of cover-up around the course.

The rain get so heavy that the R& A decided to suspend play, so Spieth and his partners, Henrik Stenson and Si-Woo Kim, all got to stand around under umbrellas and enjoy the opinion for 15 minutes. All they were missing was a flask of tea and a couple of sticks of soggy boulder. Id gladly have stayed on the couch, Spieth said, for even par.

Still he enjoyed it more than one would imagine a Texan might. He rated his first round here as one of the five best he had ever played in a major but his second was just as good in its own way.

Earlier in the week he said he reckoned the climate made the Open the easiest of the four majors. Most of the time theres a group that gets the worst of it, he explained, and its almost impossible to win in that situation. His theory is that this means youre actually playing against a smaller field, so your percentage opportunities come up unless, that is, you have end up in playing in the worst of it yourself. Which he did.

In which instance Spieth told, Theres nothing you can do about that other than keep your head down, play as well as you can and see what happens. Last day he was playing in these conditions, on the Friday afternoon at Royal Troon last year, what happened was that he shot 75. But this time around he took control of the Championship. He shot 69, with four bogeys, three birdies and an eagle. By the time he made it into the clubhouse at eight in the evening, there were seven others under par and merely a handful of players still on the course.

The rain arrived at Birkdale almost exactly as Spieth did, the first few drops sweeping across just as he took to the 1st tee. It was only a spraying, the spindrift of a wave that was a way off yet. One could see it coming in the ominous grey clouds lurking down the coast, blown in by the stiff onshore breeze and closing all the while.

Spieth made a birdie on the 1st, after splitting the fairway with a fine long tee-shot and dropping his approach down close enough for an easy putt. He did not know it yet, but that was as good as it was going to get for the next two hours. Soon those grey clouds were overhead.

In the meantime it was the wind which was causing him difficulty. At the 2nd it carried his ball into the fairway bunker down the right side. He dug the ball out to the front of the green and scuttled a little punch shot up to six feet from the cup. The gale bothered him on the green too, as he stepped away from his par putt before he put it in. Then he fell a shot at the 3rd, waiting for a breach which never went on a long putt from the leading edge of the green. That left him a tricky second from five feet which he missed.

So far as bogeys go, this one at the least had an upside. It entailed Kim had the accolade at the 4th, where the tee sits in the lee of a large grandstand. His tee shot rose up above it and was blown way over the back of the green into the bushes. After seeing that, Stenson and Spieth guessed twice about their own club selection. As for Kim, “hes to” build the long, lonely walk back up the fairway to tee-off for a second period, plonked that one into a bunker and left with a triple-bogey six. Around Royal Birkdale, things go wrong awfully quick when you let them slip.

So Spieth get busy scrambling to hold on to his lead. After dropping that shot he made par on each of the coming five holes. He played some wonderful golf in among it. There was a 30 ft putt on the 5th that rolled right up to the very edge of the hole and a deft escape from a green-side bunker at the 6th, which curled round the camber to two feet.

Better yet was a brilliant chip in from 30 feet off the back of the green to save par at the 10 th. He had fallen a shot at the 9th after he overshot the green but he was still four under. And then, when the spate passed and the wind fell, he pounced.

Spieth induced back-to-back birdies at the 11 th and 12 th, the first with a rolling 30 ft putt, the second with a tap-in after a pinpoint tee-shot. If those were all his own work, he got a little lucky at the 15 th, where he caught his second with the heel of his 3-wood. It skittered up on to the green anyway, which left him grinning at his good fortune. From there he made a 15 ft putt for eagle. It was bracketed by bogeys at the 14 th and 16 th but even so it felt like a telling blow. Not that he was thinking about that when he came off. Candidly, he told, right now Im happy just to be inside.

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Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze resigns amid reports of escort call

Mississippi football head coach-and-four Hugh Freeze has resigned after five years in charge of one of the college games most famous teams

Mississippi football head coach-and-four Hugh Freeze has resigned after five years in charge of one of the college games most famous squads amid reports he had called a phone number associated with an bodyguard service.

Ole Miss chancellor Jeffrey Vitter said that Freeze had resigned after saying he had been involved in a pattern of personal conduct inconsistent with the standard of expectations for the leader of our football squad. USA Today Sports had earlier reported that records presented a one-minute bellow from Freezes phone to the number links with the bodyguard service. Last week Freeze told ESPN: We call the wrong numbers all the time.

While Coach Freeze served our university well in many considers during his tenure, we simply can not accept the conduct in his personal life that we have discovered, Vitter said at a press conference on Thursday night.

Ole Misss athletics director, Ross Bjork, said the decision had come after an analysis of Freezes phone records. In our analysis, we detected a pattern of conduct that is not consistent with our expectations as the leader of our football program, Bjork said. As of yesterday, there appeared to be a concerning pattern.

When pressed to explain Freezes conduct, Bjork said the school needed to protect that information.

His privacy is important, Bjork added. The conduct was only not something we could continue with as our head coach.

Freezes assistant, Matt Luke, has been named as interim head coach.

The Rebels had a quick rise under Freeze, recruiting at a high level and reaching an apex with a Sugar Bowl victory over Oklahoma State following the 2015 season.

But an NCAA investigation alleging 21 charges of academic, booster, and recruiting misconduct has overshadowed much of that success, especially over the past year. The school has already self-imposed several penalties, including a one-year postseason ban for the upcoming season.

Freeze who was attaining more than$ 5m per year had a 39 -2 5 record over five seasons, including a 19 -2 1 mark in the Southeastern Conference.

But Ole Miss newfound they are able to recruit at a high level depicted the attention of the NCAA, which was already investigating the school for a handful of violations that occurred before Freezes tenure. The school has received two Notice of Allegations letters from the NCAA over the past two years. The first alleged 13 regulations violations, including nine that were classified as Level I, which the governing body deems the most serious.

Lee Harvey (@ MusikFan4Life)

This video of Laremy Tunsil was the reason why “hes been gone” from a potential# 1 overall picking to #13 to the Miami Dolphins https :// t.co/ hhWsh0 2XAi

April 29, 2016

But the instance expanded in April 2016 after Rebels offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil became the story of the NFL draft after a bizarre video of him smoking from a gas mask-bong was posted on his Twitter account just before the selections began. There was also a post on Tunsils Instagram account presenting an alleged text conversation with a football staff member about arranging pay for bills.

Freeze, a north Mississippi native, had an unlikely rise to major college coaching, spending about a decade as a successful high school coach-and-four in Memphis, Tennessee, before landing a job at Ole Miss in the mid-2 000 s under Ed Orgeron. After Orgeron was fired in 2007, Freeze became the head coach-and-four at Lambuth, a tiny NAIA school in western Tennessee.

He became Arkansas Nation offensive coordinator in 2010 and was promoted to head coach-and-four in 2011, leading the Red Wolves to a Sun Belt Conference title before being hired at Ole Miss.

Freezes specialty was on offense and the Rebels were especially efficient on that side of the ball. Behind quarterbacks like Bo Wallace and Chad Kelly, Ole Miss was consistently one of the best schools in the SEC through the air.

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