Sport ‘Mike loves his birds,’ I used to joke but nobody was laughing by the end of the tour

Before The Hangover I and II, before Spike Lee weaved his magic off Broadway in New York and before Mike Tyson was a nice guy, it was my onerous duty to take the big lad up on stage to perform for his fans.

Chris McGrath: Bolger takes New Approach on misguided path as Henrythenavigator sets true course

It is one thing for racehorses to scorn logic. Over time, in fact, they teach us to expect little else. But it is quite another for their masters to be infected with the same aversion.

Small business profile: Running like clockwork

A former computer salesman has helped revive the fortunes of a business from another era. Kate Hilpern reports

Blackburn Tovers 3 Derby County 1: Hughes hitches a ride with Santa Cruz's rising star

It is said a manager has a tendency to shape a team in his own image and for Blackburn that can only be good news. Mark Hughes' side match the hunger and commitment he showed as a player and, crucially, the potency in attack that marked him out as a feared predator at Manchester United, Barcelona and Chelsea. It takes one to know one and Hughes' record when it comes to purchasing strikers is impressive indeed. Last season Benni McCarthy netted 24 goals in his first campaign following a summer move from Porto, this time Roque Santa Cruz has taken on the mantle and needs one more in Rovers' final match at Birmingham to equal that tally.

Cumani seeks Derby encore with Curtain Call

Not even Derby colts can read newspapers, so he was hardly going to succumb to stage fright. And it was hard to imagine what else might prevent Curtain Call beating the only two rivals prepared to stand in his way at Nottingham yesterday. Sure enough, he took his cue readily, without remotely disclosing whether he can justify odds now as short as 6-1 for Epsom.

Glory days act as burden: The Invincibles haunt Forest thirty years on

In 1978 Brian Clough's 'bunch of misfits' took First Division by storm. Now the third-tier team pray for play-off success

Improving Don't Panic can step up to next level

That experienced and erudite observer, John Gosden, pointed out during the week that as much can be gleaned from what a horse does after it passes the winning post as before. He was talking about his own charge, Derby contender Centennial, at Newbury last year and the fact it took Jimmy Fortune a while to anchor the power beneath him once the race was over. Anyone watching Don't Panic at Doncaster three weeks ago would have seen what he meant. The four-year-old had carried Alan Munro past the St Leger start before he started to drop though the gears.

Six children quizzed over web fights

Police arrested six children for allegedly using a social networking website to organise gang fights.

You Write The Reviews: Frankie Boyle, T5 Club, Derby

Regular viewers of Channel 4's Mock the Week tap into a rich vein of humour from some of the sharpest knives in the comedy drawer, including the presenter, Dara O'Briain, Andy Parsons and the young pretender Russell Howard. But one of the keenest blades is Frankie Boyle, the caustic one with the spectacles. So it was with high hopes that I went to see the scathing Scotsman on the Midlands leg of his first national tour.

Households face 4% rise in council tax

Council tax bills are set to rise by around 4 per cent, independent researchers warn.

Birmingham City 1 Derby County 1: Villa pushes Birmingham into the deep end

It tells you everything about the pervasive morbidity of this encounter that we were barely halfway through a goalless first half when the referee felt it necessary to rebuke Marc Edworthy, who was vacillating over a throw-in, for time-wasting.

Train driver hurt in bridge crash

A train driver was seriously injured when he became trapped in his cabin after hitting a footbridge today.

Murtagh takes over Fallon's role at Ballydoyle

Johnny Murtagh was last night confirmed as Kieren Fallon's replacement as the No 1 jockey to the Coolmore operation. The 37-year-old Irishman, currently in Dubai, said: "I'm absolutely delighted with the appointment, and to be riding for John Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith."

Russia becomes unlikely human rights guardian

A confident, even swaggering, Russia takes the helm of Europe's foremost human rights body today, ready to deflect accusations that it has failed to live up to the standards set by the institution it will lead for the next six months.

Third World cash exodus 'points to laundering'

Money flowing into UK bank accounts from developing countries has surged in the past few years, dwarfing Britain's official aid budget, figures show.

Wolverhampton W 1 Derby County 1

Boo boys target Wolves as Derby make point
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Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
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