Sport

What a fine mess English cricket finds itself in. Yet for supporters of a certain age, the last two months in Australia have just been a return to normal service.

Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley

Mike Ashley swaps Debenhams share stake for options in 'baffling' move

Veteran City analyst described the complex transaction as 'baffling'

Bingo halls struggle to get a full house: Industry leaders blame unfair tax for game's decline

The number of clubs has dropped from nearly 600 in 2005 to fewer than 400 today

Market Report: Bookmakers downgraded as a result of clampdown on fixed-odds betting machines

It looks as if the bookies may be playing in the last-chance saloon when it comes to fixed-odds betting machines, the so-called "crack cocaine" of gambling.

51 per cent of the net takings in betting shops came from fixed-odds betting terminals

David Cameron vows to curb 'problem' of betting shops on high streets

The number of high-stakes machines is limited to four in each betting shop, but Labour claims bookmakers have got round the rule by opening more branches – often in deprived areas

The many faces of Labour leader Ed Miliband

PMQs: 50 Shades of Miliband – loud Ed is dead, red Ed is dormant. Long live quiet Ed!

A less doggish approach works well for the Labour leader. Let's hope he sticks with it

Forcing children to kiss family members 'could affect their sexual development'

Sex Education Forum chief also warns quality of teaching in schools 'a lottery'

Irish trainer Willie Mullins must choose between several Festival targets for Annie Power, pictured

Willie Mullins aims to find Annie Power’s real strengths

Annie Power, unbeaten in eight starts, goes on trial at Cheltenham on Wednesday in the Dornan Engineering Hurdle, but nobody seems really sure which Festival race she is on trial for.

Marvin Martinez found the ticket while working near his home

Landscaper collects half a million pound winnings from lottery ticket he found on the floor

A man has collected his prize money one year after discovering a lottery scratch card worth half a million pounds in a pile of leaves.

Two women display 'El Gordo' lottery tickets on their bodies as they wait for the beginning of the draw at Madrid's Teatro Real

Spain's El Gordo lottery: Fat chance or a ticket out of economic turmoil?

The world’s biggest lottery saw millions in the cash-strapped country hoping for a big win

Strictly Come Dancing 2013: Abbey Clancy crowned champion as more than 12m watch the final

Final of the BBC1 dance contest pulled in its lowest ratings for a final for four years

US Mega Millions: $568m jackpot climbs towards US lottery record

Jackpot ticket sales mean Mega Millions could beat the current record of $656m

Stoke City owner Peter Coates

The Last Word: Football blind to scale of match-fixing threat

Game’s rulers must tackle a problem that dwarfs doping and hooliganism

Sam Sodje claimed he could rig Premier League and even World Cup matches, ‘The Sun on Sunday’ reported

Police launch new probe into Championship football match-fixing after allegations players tried to get booked

The National Crime Agency (NCA) confirmed it was examining claims passed to it by the Sun on Sunday

Six Atlantic City casinos have set up online gambling with more than 50,000 internet accounts opened so far

US waiting to see if online bet is a winner

Casino operators are keen to know if  New Jersey’s internet foray will restore the sector’s fortunes

Apple employees walk towards the Apple Headquarters in Cupertino, California

Ron Wayne: The Apple founder who missed out on a fortune

As a new film tells the story of a partner in a tech firm who quits and misses out on billions, Tim Walker meets the Apple co-founder Ron Wayne, who left the company after just 12 days – and so passed up on a potential fortune of $50bn

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness