20-02-2019 In an age of endless cricket Sri Lanka just gave us a special moment | Andy Bull

Kusal Perera’s and Oshada Fernando’s last-wicket stand of 78 to beat South Africa last weekend was one of the finest spectacles the game has produced in recent yearsLast Saturday in Christchurch, Martin Guptill thrashed a century for New Zealand in a one-day game against Bangladesh; in Dubai, Shahid Afridi finished off Multan Sultans’ Twenty20 match against Islamabad United with back-to-back sixes; and in Chittagong a young kid called Jamie Smith made a run-a-ball hundred for England Under-19s in a Test against Bangladesh. Cricket’s always on, somewhere or other, one format or another, bat hitting ball like the background tick-tock of a wall clock, something you only really notice when you look at it, catch a fraction of the match in a gif, a clip, a stream, or tweet, or a glance at a scorecard.Amid all the rest of it, South Africa and Sri Lanka were playing in the first Test at Kingsmead in Durban. The match had meandered into a fourth day and it looked as if it was only going one way. South Africa v Sri Lanka isn’t necessarily a series you stop to watch. They have been playing each other for only 26 years and, in South Africa, the contests have been off-puttingly one-sided. Sri Lanka had played 13 Tests there before this series and won only one of them, in 2011, when Kumar Sangakkara and Thilan Samararweera made all the runs and Rangana Herath took most of the wickets. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Jordan Henderson steps up to show the value of meat and potatoes | Barney Ronay

The Liverpool captain is often maligned but he outshone more expensive dishes such as Thiago and James in his side’s hard-fought 0-0 draw with Bayern MunichThey came to Anfield expecting fire and light and red-shirted vengeance. They came scenting one of those hair-raising nights when the air seems to throb with wild, skirling possibilities. They may, on reflection, have slightly misread the situation.In the buildup to this Champions League first leg against Bayern Munich Jürgen Klopp had promised “passion football”, presumably a sub-genre of the usual heavy metal style: speed-metal football, Lancashire pomp-rock. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Liverpool 0-0 Bayern Munich: Why away task suits Reds' strengths - Mark Lawrenson

Liverpool might feel disappointed to draw with Bayern Munich, but ex-Reds defender Mark Lawrenson feels they are in a strong position.

20-02-2019 World sport: 10 photos we liked this week - 22-28 October

A selection of the most striking sports photographs from around the world this week.

20-02-2019 Liverpool 0-0 Bayern Munich: Champions League player ratings

Jordan Henderson gave a captain’s performance for Liverpool and Javi Martínez’s authoritative display stood out for BayernAlisson Occasionally over-confident with ball at his feet, important early save to prevent Matip own goal. 6 Continue reading...

20-02-2019 British driver Lando Norris makes a fast start on F1 track bow for McLaren

• 19-year-old’s time in testing is second only to Charles Leclerc • Lewis Hamilton completes 74 laps and is 10th-fastestLando Norris, who took to the track for the first time as a Formula One driver in testing on Tuesday, capped a strong performance by setting the second-fastest time. The 19-year-old McLaren driver will be the youngest British driver to take part in F1 when he makes his debut at the Australian Grand Prix in March and has made a controlled and confident start to his new career.Norris has already shown promise and he was able to exploit McLaren making a far stronger start in testing than they have in the previous four years. His time, set in the last hour of a day during which he completed an impressive 104 laps, was just over three-tenths down on Charles Leclerc in the Ferrari, who led the timesheets throughout. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Gordon Banks on ‘the greatest save ever made’ – video obituary

England's World Cup-winning goalkeeper Gordon Banks has died at the age of 81. Banks played 73 times for England and was a key figure in Sir Alf Ramsey's legendary 1966 side. However it's Banks's twisting save from Brazilian superstar Pelé that he is often best remembered for, a save deemed 'one of the greatest feats of goalkeeping'Gordon Banks, World Cup winner with England in 1966, dies aged 81 Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Is Tottenham's run of 30 league games without a draw a record? | The Knowledge

Plus: Old Trafford’s mysterious semi-final snub, back-to-back penalty misses and unused subs. Mail us or tweet @TheKnowledge_GU“Tottenham have currently played 30 consecutive Premier League games without drawing one,” notes Wouter van Dael. “What is the longest ever such league run?”The short answer is that Spurs are Premier League record-breakers, Wouter, but only just. “Bolton previously held this title with a run of 28 games between March and December 2011,” writes James Clarke. “But in the wider context of English league history, Spurs have a long way to go yet. Twenty-nine clubs have had longer streaks without a draw at some point – and seven have gone more than 40 consecutive league games without a stalemate: Birmingham (43 games), Walsall (44), Leicester (44), Bradford Park Avenue (44), Stoke (46), Sunderland (46) and Aston Villa (51). Although it is probably worth noting that Sunderland’s is the most recent of these, coming comparatively recently in 1908-09. The slightly interesting quirk here is that five of these seven draw-less clubs are midlands teams.Season 2017-1830 Apr Spurs 2-0 Watford5 May West Brom 1-0 Spurs9 May Spurs 1-0 Newcastle13 May Spurs 5-4 Leicester Continue reading...

20-02-2019 The Fiver | Unfit to face inferior players who have hardly run a lap since Christmas

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!Buoyed, cheered and generally heartened by the sight of Tottenham Hotspur piling some Big Cup hurt on German league leaders Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday night, Arsenal fans can look forward to some fun of their own when their team goes toe to toe with the works team of a tractor factory in Belarus tonight in Euro Vase. Bate Borisov are the opposition in the first knockout round and while most of their players are unknown outside their native country, there will at least be one recognisable face among the ranks. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Kevin De Bruyne says quadruple ‘nearly impossible’ for Manchester City

• Pep Guardiola’s side may have been ‘figured out’• City set to face Schalke in Champions League last 16Kevin De Bruyne has said Manchester City have been “figured out” but he still believes they can win three competitions and so better last season.City, in Germany for Wednesday’s Champions League last-16 first leg against Schalke, won the Premier League last season with a record 100 points and also claimed the Carabao Cup. This season they are still in contention for a quadruple and, though De Bruyne described this as “nearly impossible”, he is unfazed by City having to adjust their play to beat teams. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Roger Federer confirms clay court comeback at Madrid Open

• Swiss player has not played on clay for two years• Federer will be in the draw for tournament in MayRoger Federer confirmed his participation for this year’s Madrid Open on Wednesday, marking his return to the European clay court season after two years away.The 20-times grand slam title winner has not played this year since his defeat by Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open round of 16 in January. Federer, whose sole French Open title came in 2009, has preferred to skip the European clay season over the past two seasons to manage his schedule. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 Liverpool 0-0 Bayern Munich: Jurgen Klopp admits draw was 'not the game we dreamed of'

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp describes his side's 0-0 draw with Bayern Munich in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie as "not perfect but good enough to work with".

20-02-2019 Why the future of the World Club Challenge must be secured

Sunday night was a big success. The Super League and NRL should be working together to ensure this contest lives on By Gavin Willacy for No Helmets RequiredAnyone doubting the status of the World Club Challenge should have seen the evidence in Wigan on Sunday evening. Giant flags, a serious burst of fireworks, and the NRL and Super League trophies greeted the players as they walked out at the DW Stadium. Amid all the ceremony, it felt as if there were more people on the pitch before kick-off than have been in the stands at some League One games this season. Wigan’s hotels were full and there were even tinkers selling half-and-half scarves outside, for goodness’ sake.Yet after an interminable wait to collect their medals from Martin Offiah – looking like Cluedo’s Reverend Green in an extraordinary outfit - the victorious Roosters players seemed faintly embarrassed to be on stage after a ‘trial game’, looking at the strategically-placed bottles as if to say, “Champers, after that - really?”. But their achievement sunk in and they were still in their dressing room celebrating 80 minutes after the final hooter. Continue reading...

20-02-2019 'Rugby's like a chessboard with 120kg pieces' - how virtual reality could transform training

Painstaking research, virtual reality and holding the tackle bags in training... an insight into how a top rugby analyst operates.