May 2012: Sport in Brief

A short summary of the major developments in British and world sport this month.

ATHLETICS

Lawrence Okoye sets a British record in the discus of 68.24m.

Jessica Ennis breaks Denise Lewis’s 12 year old British heptathlon record with a score of 6906 points when winning in Gotzis.

BOXING

Savannah Marshall celebrated her 21st birthday by being crowned Britain’s first women’s world boxing champion. She won the middleweight title at the championships in China.

Ireland lightweight Katie Taylor claimed her fourth consecutive world title

Carl Froch wins s third world super-middleweight title when stopping previously unbeaten IBF champion Lucian Bute in the fifth round  in Nottingham.

CANOEING

Ed McKeever won the World Cup race in Poznan in the K1 200m event.

CRICKET

England take the opening match of the Test series against the West Indies at Lord’s by five wickets. The WIndies struggle in the first innings but make a fight of it with a much better effort second time around. After a shaky start to their 2nd innings England win quite easily.

The 2nd test at a hot and sunny Trent Bridge sees the West Indies make another poor start but centuries by Samuels and Sammy see them to 370. England surpass that with 428 and captain Strauss adds a century to the one he scored at Lord’s. The WIndies top order again fails and England only need a hundred runs to win, which they achieve for the loss of one wicket.

CYCLING

The Giro d’Italia starts with three stages in Denmark. Mark Cavendish wins a sprint on day two to take the stage but is brought down in a crash at the finish the next day. Cavendish also wins two more stages. Canada’s Ryder Hesjedal snatches victory in the final day’s time trial. Cavendish narrowly misses out on the points jersey.

DIVING

Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow ended Great Britain’s 74-year wait for a female European Diving Championships title in Eindhoven when winning the 10m platform synchro title.

Tom Daley wins the European 10m platform title on the day before his 18th birthday.

EQUESTRIANISM

British number one Nick Skelton claimed another major victory on the road to London when he won the Global Champions’ Tour event in Hamburg.

FOOTBALL

In a Manchester derby that could be crucial to deciding the Premier league title the top two meet at City’s Etihad stadium. Just before half-time Vincent Company heads the only goal of the game. The result puts City and United level on points with City having the better goal difference. United’s eight point lead of a few weeks earlier has gone.

West Brom manager Roy Hodgson is appointed England manager a month before the European Championships. The appointment surprises many who thought Tottenham’s Harry Redknapp would get the job.

The FA Cup final at Wembley sees Chelsea meeting Liverpool. In the first half Chelsea have the better of the game and Ramires scores. Didier Drogba scores for the fourth time in an FA Cup final on the second half to give Chelsea a two goal lead but substitute Andy Carroll gets one back and claims he has scored a second goal for Liverpool when Petr Cech saves the ball when almost over the line. Chelsea hang on for their fourth FA Cup win in six years.

Both Manchester City (at high-flying Newcastle) and United (home to Swansea) win 2.0 to leave the title race level on points with one game remaining.City’s goal difference is eight better. Blackburn lose at home to Wigan to be sure of relegation with one game still to play. Poor results for Arsenal,Spurs and Newcastle leave fourth place up for grabs. QPR score a late winner v Stoke and Bolton lose a 2.0 lead v West Brom to give QPR hope of staying up.

Hereford are relegated from the league after Barnet win at Burton. It is the third successive year that Barnet have survived on the final day of the season. Sheffield Wednesday win promotion to the Championship.

The final day of the Premier league season. Man City host relegation-threatened QPR needing only to match Man Utd’s result at Sunderland. United take an early lead and the score remains 1.0 until the final whistle. City lead 1.0 at half-time but QPR score twice to take a 2.1 lead as the game reaches injury time. QPR have been down to ten men after Joey Barton’s sending off but look like holding on until City score twice in injury time through Dzeko and Aguero.  The winning goal snatches the title from United and gives City their first league championship since 1968. Elsewhere Arsenal take third in the league ahead of Tottenham. Bolton can only draw at Stoke and are relegated.

Atletico Madrid defeat Athletic Bilbao 3-0 in the Europa League Final with Falcao scoring twice.

Aston Villa and Liverpool sack Alex McLeish and Kenny Dalglish respectively after disappointing league campaigns.

West Ham score a late winner through Vaz Te to beat Blackpool 2-1 in the Championship play-off final. The Hammers make an immediate return to the Premier League.

The Scottish Cup Final sees an all Edinburgh final for the first time in more than a century. Hearts run out comfortable 5-1 winners against Hibs who are reduced to ten men.

Chelsea and Bayern Munich meet in the Champions League Final at Bayern’s own Allianz Arena. Bayern dominate much of the game but can’t take any chances until Muller scores in the 83rd minute. They are unable to hold on as Chelsea equalise a few minutes later through a bullet header from Didier Drogba after a corner. The game goes to extra time. Bayern are awarded a penalty following a Drogba foul but Robben’s kick is saved by Cech. After extra time the game ends 1-1. Bayern take an early advantage in the penalty shoot-out but after four penalties each the scores are level. Bayern’s Schweinsteiger hits the post but Drogba, in possibly his final appearance for Chelsea, scores to give Chelsea the victory. It is the first time a London club has won the European Cup or Champions League and is a triumph for caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo.

York City win the Conference play-off final 2-1 against Luton to return to the league.

Huddersfield win a marathon penalty shoot-out against Sheffield Utd to win promotion to the championship in the play-off final. Crewe win the second division play-off final.

Birmingham win the women’s FA Cup final on penalties against Chelsea.

In his first game in charge of England Roy Hodgson wins 1-o in Norway through an Ashley Young goal.

GOLF

Luke Donald regains the world number one ranking after retaining the PGA title at Wentworth. Rory McIlroy loses the number spot and fails to make the cut in the event.

GYMNASTICS

The GB men make history with a first ever team title at the European Championships.

HOCKEY

The Great Britain women win the final of the Olympic test event 2-0 against Argentina. The men finish third in their event but appear likely to lose player Simon Mantell for the Olympics after he fractures a metatarsal during the event.

Laren  beat fellow Dutch team ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the final of the women’s European Champions Cup to end one of the longest winning streaks in any sport. ‘s-Hertogenbosch had won the previous twelve titles.

HORSE RACING

At Newmarket the favourite Camelot wins the 2000 Guineas for trainer Aidan O’Brien who also saddles the 1000 Guineas winner Homecoming Queen at 25-1. The victories end a long barren spell in English classics for O’Brien.

I’ll Have Another is a surprise winner of the Kentucky Derby.

Frankel returns to the track with a comfortable win in the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury. It is his tenth win out of ten starts.

ICE HOCKEY

Russia win the final of the world championships 6-2 against Slovakia.

MODERN PENTATHLON

Mhairi Spence wins the world title in Paris and leads the British women to team gold.

MOTOR CYCLING

Casey Stoner wins the Portuguese Moto GP race at Estoril ahead of Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa again. These three appear to be well ahead of the rest.

In the French Moto GP in Le Mans Lorenzo wins a race held in wet conditions ahead of Valentino Rossi who has by far his best race of the season.

MOTOR RACING

Pastor Maldonado becomes the first Venezuelan driver to win a Grand Prix when he wins in Spain. It is Williams’s first Grand Prix win since 2004. Maldonado is the fifth different driver from a fifth different team to win in the first five races of the season. Lewis Hamilton qualified fastest but is relegated to last on the grid after his car has insufficient fuel to be tested after qualifying. He finishes the race in 8th.

Mark Webber wins the Monaco Grand Prix to make it six different winners of the opening six races of a season for the first time ever. He wins from pole despite a queue of cars behind him at the finish as overtaking proves as difficult as ever at Monaco.

Dario Franchitti wins the Indianapolis 500 for the third time.

ROWING

Britain win four golds at the first world cup regatta of the season in Belgrade. The men’s four, men’s lightweight double (Purchase and Hunter), women’s pair (Glover and Stanning) and women’s double sculls (Grainger and Watkins) all win.

At the World Cup in Lucerne Britain win three golds. The men’s four, women’s pair and women’s double sculls all repeating their Belgrade wins.

RUGBY UNION

Newcastle win at Wasps in the final game of the season but it isn’t enough to prevent them finishing bottom of the Premiership as the win wasn’t by enough. Newcastle may be saved from relegation if the team winning promotion to the Premiership don’t have a good enough stadium. Harlequins finish top of the league one point ahead of Leicester, who are themselves one point clear of Saracens in third.

In the play-off semi-finals Harlequins score a late try to snatch victory against Northampton and Leicester win at home to Saracens.

Leinster win the European Cup for the third time in four years with comfortable win over Ulster at Twickenham. The 42-14 scoreline is a record margin of victory for a final.

Harlequins take the Premiership final for the first time with a 30-23 win over Leicester at Twickenham.

Ospreys beat Leinster 31-30 in the RaboDirect Pro 12 Final with Shane Williams scoring a try in his final appearance.

SAILING

Ben Ainslie wins a record sixth world sailing title when taking the Finn class on home waters in Falmouth.

Great Britain sailors Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark take the gold medal at the 470 World Championship in Barcelona.

SNOOKER

After losing in the quarter-finals of the world championships seven time winner Stephen Hendry announces his retirement Hendry scored a maximum 147 break on the first day of the tournament. His conquerer Steven Macguire loses a cagey semi-final to Ali Carter while in the other semi Ronnie O’Sullivan easily beats Matthew Stevens. O’Sullivan leads the final from start to finish and wins 18-11. Carter tries to play a tactical game but Ronnie’s all-round play is too good.  He wins his fourth world title, the first since 2008 when he also beat Carter in the final.

SQUASH

World champion Nick Matthew beat Egypt’s Ramy Ashour to become the first Englishman to win the British Open three times in the professional era.

TAEKWONDO

At the European Championships in Manchester there are gold medals for Michael Harvey, Aaron Cook (retaining his title) and Lutalo Mohammad. No British women make finals.

TRIATHLON

Helen Jenkins and Jonny Brownlee win their races at the ITU World Triathlon series in San Diego.

Jonny Brownlee wins the World series race in Madrid.

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