Cash slams ‘out of control’ Aussie fans

Melbourne: Tennis icon Pat Cash has criticised fans as being “out of control” at the Australian Open after wild scenes during home hope Nick Kyrgios’s loss to Benoit Paire. Cash said he was embarrassed at the crowd’s baiting of the French seed and warned there could be a repeat of the tournament’s infamous crowd violence. “The crowd were absolutely going crazy. Actually I’d say out of control,” Australia’s Cash told Fox Sports, referring to the five-set marathon on Thursday. “I thought the umpire didn’t handle that at all … it was a joke. Paire would throw the ball up and they’d go ‘Miss it!’, stuff like this. It was out of control.” He added: “It’s the Australian Open, it’s got international players, it’s not a Davis Cup, it’s not a football match. A fair amount of the crowd had no respect whatsoever for a seeded French player, absolutely no respect. I was quite embarrassed and I think the officials need to do something about it.” Fan violence has marred previous editions of the Australian Open, and Cash said there could have been a repeat if any French fans had taken exception. “It got out of hand a few years ago with the Greeks and the Croatians having fights, I don’t want to get into who started what but if there was French people there they could have been really upset about what was going on,” he said. Paire clawed back from two sets down against Kyrgios, 18, in a pulsating match that ran for three hours and 20 minutes. (AFP)

Bhullar tied 2nd after McIlroy penalty

Abu Dhabi: Gaganjeet Bhullar has a fair chance of staking his claim on the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf as the Indian golfer is just two strokes away from the leader Craig Lee after the third round of the European Tour event here. Bhullar carded a flawless six-under 66 and moved up through the field from overnight tied 13th to tied third in the company of five-time Major winner, Phil Mickelson (63) with a score of 10-under 202. However, Bhullar and Mickelson gained a place to tied second, following the two-shot penalty handed out to Rory McIlroy (70) for an incorrect drop, which pushed the former World No. 1 to the fourth spot at nine-under 207. Under some rather complicated rules, McIlroy’s ball landed on “ground under repair” from which he was allowed to extract his ball and drop it at another spot, but he did so incorrectly. Bhullar’s colleagues Jeev Milkha Singh (74) and Shiv Kapur (75) slipped down to tied 67th at two-over 214. Meanwhile, in Hua Hin, Thailand, Anirban Lahiri grabbed birdies on three of the four par-five holes to card a one-under 71 under windy conditions and force his way into top-10 at the King’s Cup Golf. Also getting into the top-10 was Rahil Gangjee (71) at three-under 213. SSP Chowrasia (72) moved up from tied 30th to 20th at one-under 215 and Jyoti Randhawa (73) was two-over for three rounds. Only four of the nine Indians who started made the cut. Meanwhile, Korea’s Mo Joong-kyung took his place atop the leaderboard with a third round two-under 70. (PTI)

Aussies looking for series win: Haddin

Sydney: Australia will be looking to open England’s “scars” and close out the one-day series on Sunday, wicketkeeper Brad Haddin said after his team’s thrilling one-wicket victory over the luckless tourists in Brisbane. Alastair Cook’s men have now lost the opening two ODIs which follow their demoralising 5-0 loss in the Ashes, despite coming desperately close at the Gabba on Friday. Australia have the chance to close out the five-match series here by going to an unbeatable 3-0, “and that’s what we’re looking to do”, Haddin said. “We obviously go into every series wanting to win the series, and we’re hoping after last night we can open a few more scars a bit wider and finish it off in Sydney,” he said. (AFP)

Shehzad hits ton but Pakistan toil for runs

Sharjah: Opener Ahmed Shehzad scored a maiden century but Pakistan toiled for runs in their bid for a series-levelling win against Sri Lanka in the third and final Test in Sharjah on Saturday. The 22-year-old right-hander made 147 in only his second Test as Pakistan scored 291/6 at close on the third day, still trailing by 137 runs over Sri Lanka’s first innings total of 428/9 declared. With two days remaining and Pakistan lagging well behind they will be hard pressed to enforce a result, with Sri Lanka happy for a no-result affair as they lead the series 1-0. (AFP)

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