Sport Rory McIlroy with Tiger Woods in Dubai

The Northern Irishman struck a 63 in the opening round to put him nine under par

Album: Tinariwent, Tassili (V2)

Due to the uncertain political situation in their Malian home base of Tessalit, Tinariwen did what comes naturally to nomads, upping sticks and relocating to a tent in the Algerian desert to record Tassili.

Almost 40 per cent of Lib Dem voters desert

More than a third of people who voted Liberal Democrat in last year's general election wish they had chosen differently, an Independent on Sunday poll shows.

Leading article: Easy listening

What honour could be more satisfying than an appearance on Desert Island Discs? To be invited proves that you are a person of significance. And it panders to the strange hankering that has lurked in the British subconscious at least since the time of Daniel Defoe to get away from urban civilisation and to live alone in a tropical paradise. Plus it invites you to choose and hear your eight favourite tracks.

Video feature: Desert Crossings at The Place

Preview an innovative piece of dance theatre, Desert Crossings, opening at The Place, Robin Howard Dance Theatre, in March, choreographed by Gregory Maqoma and inspired by Namibia's Skeleton Coast.

China: Spread of deserts has slowed

Beijing says it has made progress in slowing the loss of land to deserts, but warned that it could take hundreds of years to reclaim areas already swallowed by desertification.

America, By Jean Baudrillard, trs Chris Turner

Billed as "travel/philosophy", America does not fall neatly into either category. It is a series of assertions, inspired by his travels in America, in which Baudrillard strains his hardest to be clever and provocative.

Tinariwen, The Forum, London

Haunting rhythms of the desert

Eight killed in California off-road race

A vehicle ran into a crowd and killed eight people during an off-road race in the Southern California desert, police said today.

Sponsor likely to desert England after World Cup disappointment

The financial fallout from England's embarrassing World Cup is set to see them lose their flagship sponsor amid claims that the Football Association face an immediate struggle to attract blue-riband backers given the combination of the team's failure in South Africa and the current financial climate.

Album: Dirtmusic, BKO (Glitterhouse)

Perhaps it's because the Australian /American trio Dirtmusic was itself formed from members of other bands – variously, The Walkabouts, Come and Bad Seeds – that it collaborates so seamlessly here with the Tuareg group Tamikrest, whose own debut album was released just a few weeks ago.

DVD review: Tulpan (12)

Sergei Dvortsevoy (DVD/Blu-ray, 103 mins)

Commander chases history

Gold Cup hero heads for Aintree in bid to end 76-year wait for follow-up triumph

On The Road: Soaking up desert life in Alice Springs

Alice Springs is greener than I expected. As you fly in you can see the red desert pocked with trees, the organic lines of forgotten riverbeds crossed with straight dirt trails. The aerial landscape seems to mirror the dotted style of the indigenous artwork in this part of the world.

Album: Tamikrest, Adagh (Glitterhouse)

The "spiritual sons of Tinariwen" says the press release, which is one way of putting it.

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