Sunday Territorian 15 May 2011
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www.sundayterritorian.com.au Sunday Territorian, Sunday, May 15, 2011 69 P U B : N T N E W S D A T E : 1 5 -M A Y -2 0 1 1 P A G E : 6 9 C O L O R : C M Y K sundayterritorian.com.au SPORT TENNIS SAMANTHA Stosur said she played her best tennis since last years French Open in beating home favourite Francesca Schiavone 6-2, 6-4 to reach the Italian Open semifinals in Rome. The sixth seed gained revenge on the second seed for her defeat in the Roland Garros final last year. While Schiavone had been on fire in Paris last year, she was lacking at her home tournament and Stosur said that often the pressure of playing in front of your own fanswas a handicap. WORLD No. 2 Novak Djokovic faced Andy Murray in the Italian Open semi-finals overnight after taking his unbeaten run this year to 35 matches by storming past Robin Soderling yesterday. Djokovic beat fifth seed Soderling 6-3, 6-0 to boost his overall winning streak to 37, while Murray became the first British man to reach the Rome semis in the Open era after a 1-6, 6-1, 6-1win over FlorianMayer. SEVEN-time grand slam champion Venus Williams has pulled out of the French Open, 24 hours after her younger sister Serena also withdrew. The tournament, which begins on May 22, will become the first Grand Slam tournament since 2003 without either Williams sister. The 30-year-old five-time Wimbledon champion is still plagued by the abdominal injury which forced her to pull out of the Australian Open in January. TWO-time French Open runner-up Kim Clijsters is on schedule for another trip to Roland Garros with her recovery from shoulder, wrist and ankle injuries progressing well. Clijsters had been sidelined since April. The Australian Open champion hopes to be able to make a definitive decision next week. MOTORCYCLING AUSTRALIAS former world champion Casey Stoner laid down a marker for the French Grand Prix with the Honda rider setting the fastest time in practice at Le Mans. Stoner, who won the season opener in Qatar, led a Honda one-two-three in the two sessions with Marco Simoncelli and Dani Pedrosa tucked in behind. The Australian set the fastest lap of 1min 33.782sec in the session which was 0.404sec faster than Simoncelli. GOLF AARON Baddeley and Greg Chalmers are well-placed for an assault on the US PGA Tours richest purse after impressive second rounds at TPC Sawgrass in the Players Championship yesterday. Baddeley backed up his first round 70 with a bogey-free five-under-par 67 to move to seven-under-par and tie for seventh, three off the lead held by American David Toms who is 10-under. Overnight leader Nick Watney is second at nine-under as a stellar field battles for the $US1.7 millionwinners prize. SOCCER TWO men have been charged with sending letter bombs to Celtic manager Neil Lennon and two prominent fans of the Glasgow club. Trevor Muirhead, 43, and Neil McKenzie, 41, appeared at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court charged with three counts of dispatching packages containing explosive substances and two of sending hoax bombs. Neither man entered a plea and bothwere detained in custody. MOTORRACING THE group behind bringing Formula One racing back to America next year are facing fresh criticism from sceptics who say the cash-strapped Texas state cant afford the ambitious scheme. With a budget deficit estimated to reach $US27 billion ($25.5 billion) over the next two years, some state lawmakers are wondering where the US$250 million ($236.4 million) is going to come from to build a new race facility in Austin. Sydneys best win this season saps the Power SYDNEY produced its most potent scoring performance of the season and added to Port Adelaides woes last night, bolting to a 62-point win at the SCG. The Swans kicked 13 goals to five in the second half, registering their highest score of the season, winning 18.13 (121) to 9.5 (59). It was Sydneys seventh straight win over Port, whose miserable season record dipped to 1-7 with a fourth straight defeat. Port dominated much of the first half, racking up far more possessions and marks, but didnt make Sydney pay on the scoreboard. Sydney had 12 goalkickers, young forward Sam Reid kicking three and four other players booting two. Warhorse midfielder Jude Bolton tallied 33 possessions for Sydney and Josh Kennedy 31. Hard-working Travis Boak, who finished with 28 touches, was one of the few Port players to shine. The visitors started the better in each of the first two quarters, but still trailed by margins of three and nine points at the first two breaks. Sydney kicked four of the first five second-half goals to lead 62-33 early in the third term. Port hit back with the next three to once again get themselves within nine points. The Swans produced a decisive surge, notching the last three goals of the term to enter the final quarter with a 30-point buffer. Among the goals in that second surge was one from Lewis RobertsThomson, who took a spectacular pack mark in his first senior game in 10 months. Port showed little fight in the final term in which Sydney slammed on six goals to one. It was a different story early on, as Port, whose last win over Sydney was in 2006, settled quicker. Hard-won victory Rohan Bewick of the Lions marks over Essendons Jake Melksham at the Gabba last night Picture: DARREN ENGLAND ANY win at the Gabba is worth cherishing, that is if you are an Essendon fan. But the fact the Bombers broke an 11-year drought at the ground last night is no reason to rush for a replay. The win against a bedraggled Brisbane will hardly go down as a classic. A wasteful Essendon played its worst half for the year, before its dominance in forward 50 entries finally converted into a gap on the scoreboard. On a night when so many opportunities were blown, David Zaharakis slotted in four second-half goals to add some sanity, as the Bombers finally stormed to a 36-point win. Zaharakiss improvement this year is parallel with that of the Bombers. He was as silky as anyone when it counted even if he, too, was guilty of some howling mistakes in the first half. While the execution and the decision-making were sloppy at times, coach James Hird will be content with the pressure and workrate. Essendon dominated the inside-50 count 20 to 10 in the first term, yet trailed by three points. The trend was even more dramatic in the second quarter, with the Bombers leading the key stat 39-17 at the long break; but they still trailed by a point. It defied logic. The Bombers had been so clinical and precise all season, hitting the scoreboard with ease; but everything was difficult against the Lions. The Bombers, who had not only found new snarl but also new smarts this season, were playing dumb. But if you keep pumping the ball in, no matter how haphazardly, the opposition will eventually buckle. And bad teams like Brisbane buckle big-time when they go. It became a procession in the final term. Jed Adcock worked his butt off, and was still revving up his teammates 25 minutes into the last term; but it will be a long, long year for him and the Lions. Hodge set for free run Luke Hodge HAWTHORN has warned the handbrake is about to be released on captain Luke Hodges slow start to the AFL season. Hodge has battled an Achilles problem all year, which has held him back from being able to train fully ahead of games. But the Hawks eight-day break going into Sundays clash with St Kilda at the MCG has allowed Hodge a rare long run into a match this season. So much has he improved in the lead-up that coach Alastair Clarkson believes Hodges best form is coming sooner than the club initially thought. The way hes responded the past two or three weeks, Clarkson said yesterday. And he believes Hodge is nearly over the crest. Hes probably been able to train more for this game than what he has been able to do for the four or five games hes played to date. Eagles pair share bond WEST Coast defender Sam Butler cant help but smile when he thinks about the injury curse that has struck him and his friend Beau Waters. Indeed, many of their AFL teammates find it hard to believe how unlucky the pair have been in their quest to consistently play together. Waters and Butler formed a strong bond after being drafted to the Eagles from their hometown of Adelaide back in 2003. But their dreams of forging long careers playing side-by-side have been frustrated by a horror run of injuries, including groin, knee, hamstring, hernia, ankle, elbow, facial and quad setbacks. Although Waters and Butler have notched up 154 games between them in parallel careers, they have played together just 23 times. Waters is expected to be sidelined for at least nine more weeks as he recovers from an elbow dislocation suffered in round two. But Butler will be back today as West Coast (3-3) faces arch rival Fremantle (4-2) at Patersons Stadium. Solid test for Bulldogs Dale Morris DALE Morris will get by with some help up the ground from his friends. The Western Bulldogs defender has emphasised the need for teammates to clamp down heavily on Richmonds ball use in to days match at Etihad Stadium. With the Dogs defence under manned because of a series of injuries, coach Rodney Eade said Morris would have the pivotal job of playing on dangerous Tigers full forward Jack Riewoldt. The Coleman Medallist looms as a nightmare for the Bulldogs backline, while Richmonds small forwards Robin Nahas and Jake King are also in solid form. Its definitely a team defence and a team role to stop him (Riewoldt), because hes their beacon up forward, Morris said. If you can stop Riewoldt, it goes a long way to stopping Richmond.