England opener Alex Hales takes a catch during the first Twenty20 match against Australia

Twenty20 series: England opener Alex Hales confident of comeback to win three-match series after Hobart defeat

England suffered yet another defeat in the opening Twenty20 match against Australia and need to win the remaining two if they are to take the series

Jos Buttler hit a rapid-fire 71 off 43 balls

ODI series: About time! Ben Stokes gives England the elusive tas te of vic tory against Australia

A rapid-fire 71 from Jos Buttler helps England to record a 57-run victory any finally earn relief as they avoid equalling their worst ever run of defeats

The Nathusius’ pipistrelle weighs just 7.6g and is the size of a human thumb

English pipistrelle’s record journey to Europe proves bats can fly across seas

A tiny bat the size of a human thumb has become the first to be recorded crossing the North Sea from Britain to mainland Europe – before meeting an untimely end in the Netherlands.

James Taylor

Nottinghamshire batsman James Taylor ready to fill No 3 vacancy left by Jonathan Trott

The 24-year-old played two Tests against South Africa in 2012

Yooranah with his mother Alinga at Edinburgh Zoo

A new plan to save Australian wildlife prioritises saving species which add the most to the economy. But is this a mercenary approach, or just good sense?

If you have nearly 100 critically endangered animals, how do you target limited conservation resources? Australian scientists have come up with one solution, using a mathematical equation to determine which species should be saved and which let go.

Kevin Pietersen admits he is determined to be a part of England's 2015 side that will attempt to regain the Ashes

Comment: Kevin Pietersen's position in this war with Andy Flower is weakened by his total lack of form

The batsman faces being ousted from the international set-up following England's 5-0 defeat in the Ashes

Shane Watson trudges off after the fall of his wicket in the Third Test

Ashes 2013/14: Shane Watson’s flat-footed dismissal typical of a batsman for whom there is a yawning gulf between his performance and his potential

The Aussie Angle: No one promises more nor falls short so often. He is Australia’s biggest tease

Mitchell Johnson has become Australia's spearhead
The tone in the Sky Sports commentary box these days is like a dressing-room banter free-for-all

Sport on TV: David Gower flies in face of all the old captains who lower tone

The first session of the First Test has often proved a pivotal passage of play in Ashes series Down Under. Even the first ball; Steve Harmison’s wide to second slip in 2006, or Michael Slater smashing Phil DeFreitas through cover point for four in 1994. It tends to “set the tone”, as the pundits like to say – and the tone in the Sky Sports commentary box these days is like a dressing-room banter free-for-all.

Book review: Cockroaches, By Jo Nesbo, translated by Don Bartlett

Jo Nesbo gently but firmly clutched my arm. I was to talk to him at the Manchester Literature Festival, and our names had been announced; we were heading for the stage.

George Bailey

The Light Roller: The Ashes will be won and lost by old men and new-fangled salads

Diary of a cricket obsessive

England's Ashes warm-up match was rained off for the second day in succession

Twin Towers costumes, a llama and a sombrero: How to do (or not to do) drunken tomfoolery

This week we’ve seen the best and worst sides of drunken excesses. What have we learnt? Just like in life: llamas good, racism bad.

Spider on a pillow is among non-emergency calls to firefighters

London Fire Brigade has revealed some of the strangest requests their control room has received recently

There is no risk of bats helping to spread malaria to people

Bat 'immunity' over malaria parasites could could be key to human vaccines, says top scientist

The bugs have probably infected bats for millions of years and their immune system has evolved to cope

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The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
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As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
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We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
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Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
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Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
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Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
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Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star