News Dr Andrew Davis claims rival camps in the debate over how to teach children to read are acting like 'religious fundamentalists'

Children who are fluent readers are being damaged by the Government’s insistence on using synthetic phonics in the classroom, a leading academic warns today.

Round-up: Alan Richardson rolls back years as Kent create horrid history

Bowler of the day: At 38, the Worcestershire seamer Alan Richardson would admit that his best days are behind him.

Southampton

The iQuiz part two: In pictures

Tuesday's iQuiz first round was as hotly contested as ever - and it's been memorialised on film.

Chris Rogers smashed his way to a double hundred yesterday

Chris Rogers raps out an Ashes message with double ton

Middlesex 166 & 514-8 Surrey 338 & 85-1 Match drawn

Graeme Swann took four wickets and made a brave half-century

Graeme Swann escapes ban despite 'serious dissent'

England bowler penalised for actions in comeback game for Nottinghamshire against Durham

Graeme Swann took four wickets and made a brave half-century

Graeme Swann's day spoilt by Phil Mustard cutting a dash for Durham

Nottinghamshire 320 & 333 Durham 471 & 184-4 (Durham win by six wickets)

Durham’s Mark Wood on his way to an unbeaten 58 yesterday

Mark Wood right at home to torment Notts yet again

Nottinghamshire 320 & 145-5 Durham 471

Joe Root showed his class with 182 to help Yorkshire to victory

Round-Up: Warwickshire draw strength from escape at Somerset

Warwickshire pulled off an unlikely escape act to salvage a draw as yesterday's sole remaining County Championship fixture produced a thriller in Taunton.

Nottinghamshire’s Graeme Swann bowls in the nets as he nears his return

James Taylor helps Notts cash in as Derbyshire get harsh lesson

Derbyshire 256 Nottinghamshire 325-5

<b>Kevin Pietersen - 4</b><br/>
Never seemed ready for this series and his 73 in the second Test was untypically laboured. Perhaps it was the knee which forced him to leave the tour, perhaps something more deeply-seated.

Ashes 2013: Fears over fitness of Kevin Pietersen heighten

The batsman will miss the Champions Trophy

Cricket round-up: Shane Watson's Aussie turmoil

Ashes watch part one: Australia will begin this summer's Ashes series in England with a new vice-captain after Shane Watson, left, quit yesterday following a turbulent stint as Michael Clarke's deputy. The 31-year-old all-rounder was suspended during Australia's disastrous tour of India for failing to submit a written self-critique to coach Mickey Arthur. Watson stood in for Clarke as India completed a 4-0 series win with a six-wicket victory in Delhi. His own form has been patchy and he cited that as a reason for resigning. "I want to be the best Test player I can be and think I can do that by focusing my attention on scoring runs and taking wickets."

Man faces British court over 'Facebook threats to kill 200 in US'

A British man who allegedly posted on Facebook threats to kill 200 people in America appeared before a crown court judge today.

County Championship round-up: It's an Aussie one-two as Ed Cowan pips George Bailey to 50

The first County Championship half-century of an Ashes summer was scored, appropriately, by an Australian, pipping another to the mark by moments. Ed Cowan, the man likely to open the batting for Michael Clarke's team in the first Test at Trent Bridge in July, marked his first appearance on that ground for Nottinghamshire by passing 50 in the 20th over against Middlesex, an over ahead of George Bailey, Australia's Twenty20 captain, on his Hampshire debut against Leicestershire at the Ageas Bowl. Bailey fell seven runs short of a debut century.

Paolo Di Canio’s arrival as Sunderland coach has led many miners to want to remove their historic banner from the club in protest

Suspicious miners prepare to vote over Sunderland's appointment of Paolo Di Canio

The Italian's appointment has proved hugely controversial

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Albert Camus (left) and Jean-Paul Sartre fell out in 1952 and did not speak again before Camus’s death
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Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
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Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?