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After a yes vote in September’s referendum the two countries are brought to the brink of the first Anglo-Scottish war for five centuries by a menacing deadlock over whether the pound will survive north of the border. Scotland has seized control of Trident.

Holly Bleasdale endured a miserable, injury-hit 2013

Revitalised Holly Bleasdale is focused on medals and that five-metre mark

For most, it has proved  unattainable. Only two athletes have ever achieved such lofty feats: one is the current Olympic champion, American Jennifer Suhr, the other the greatest female vaulter of all time, Yelena Isinbayeva.

Ice moves: Shiva Keshavan in Vancouver in 2010

In from the cold: India has been officially excluded from the Sochi Winter Olympic Games but four of its athletes will still compete

When the athletes march into the opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympics next month, one flag you won't be seeing is the green, white, and saffron of India. Four Indian skiers will be participating in the games as independent athletes, but they won't be able to formally represent their country, since the Indian Olympic Association has been suspended by the International Olympic Committee since 2012.

Tom Daley is already making plans to hit his peak at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games

Diving: Tom Daley hoping to peak just in time for Rio Olympics as he looks to improve on London 2012 bronze medal

Daley will be 22 at the Rio Games and hopes an injury-free run will see him hit his best form at the right time

Sir Chris Chataway dead: First ever Sports Personality of the Year winner dies aged 82

The former athlete, politician and broadcaster had suffered from cancer for two and a half years

To dine for: the Cips Club restaurant at the Cipriani in Venice

My life in travel: Jonathan Edwards

'The Cipriani in Venice was immaculate'

Jessica Ennis-Hill

Jessica Ennis-Hill announces pregnancy: Sporting comebacks from motherhood

The heptathlete aims to return in time for the 2016 Olympics

The Sport Matrix: Wednesday 8 January 2014

Sunderland ensure Moyes misery continues in cup

The Sport Matrix: Wednesday 01 January 2014

Arsenal injury woe as Mourinho ramps up pressure on City

The five new coin designs which will go into circulation on 1st January 2014

Royal Mint unveils new coins commemorating historic British anniversaries in 2014

Lord Kitchener will appear on the new £2 coin to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War

Aggreko wins Brazil World Cup power contract

Temporary power firm Aggreko — responsible for keeping the lights on and the cameras rolling at the last World Cup in South Africa and at the London 2012 Olympics — has been chosen by FIFA to perform the same duties across 12 different venues in Brazil.

The Sport Matrix: Tuesday 26 November 2013

Trott departs tour as England’s Ashes left in turmoil

Helping hands: Commonwealth Games gold medallist Liz McColgan (right) now coaches her 22-year-old daughter Eilish, a promising steeplechaser

Liz McColgan ‘amazed’ by emotional Commonwealth Game snub

Long-distance legend tells Richard Rae she will have no role in Glasgow

The Sport Matrix: Thursday 21 November 2013

Gerrard welcomes negativity as Terry return played down

The News Matrix: Tuesday 19 November 2013

Met’s Hogan-Howe may be investigated

Mark Cavandish's second autobiography 'at speed: My life in the fast lane'

At Speed: My Life in the Fast Lane by Mark Cavendish

Book of the week

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Barn owls are among species that could be affected
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Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
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After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas