Sport Times Up, left, ridden by Ryan Moore, wins the Speedy Services Doncaster Cup, at Doncaster yesterday

Trainer seeks fourth winner in the Classic in seven years but Talent could upset favourite

Castro whips up Cuban fury over tug-of-war boy

FURIOUS anti-American dem- onstrations continued in Cuba yesterday as the deadline set by the Cuban President, Fidel Castro, for the return of six-year- old Elian Gonzalez to his homeland approached.

US rejects Cuba plea for return of boy rejected

ESCALATING AN already bitter political dispute, the United States yesterday rejected Cuban demands for the repatriation of a six-year-old boy and warned of unspecified consequences if US diplomats in Havana were not protected. The strong words came from the White House and State Department as protesters thronged around the US mission in the Cuban capital for the second day.

Obituary: Alberto Bolet

THE NAME of the Cuban-born pianist Jorge Bolet is a household item wherever music is discussed; that of his elder brother, the conductor Alberto Bolet, is less common currency, though Alberto was a professional musician for three-quarters of the century, devoting particular energy to the promotion of Spanish and Latin American music.

Cuban boy saved from sea sets off a diplomatic row

A FIVE-YEAR-OLD Cuban boy who clung to the inner tube of a tyre for two days after the boat that had been carrying him and 12 others from Cuba to Florida sank last week is now at the centre of a political and legal confrontation between Washington and Havana. He may have to go home again.

Classical: A musical treasure trove in casa de la trova

Where were the women in Buena Vista Social C lub? In trova, an earthier variety of music than the now-famous `son', women can express raw emotion.

Friday Book: The mobsters at Fidel Castro's gate

Havana Bay

Travel Notes: The dancing pigeons of old Havana

THE GIRLS are back. In tight, bright Lycra, the jiniteras have returned to Havana Vieja, old Havana. The male version - jiniteros - offer cigars. Jiniteras offer themselves for the night, the week, whatever. "De que pais? Tienas chica?" their sibilant patter goes. Black, mulatta, honey and vanilla white, college students or high-school teachers, they are a less than secret tourist attraction in Cuba.

The day I addressed the Commons when drunk

IN ALAN Clark's Diary, he tells how, in July 1983, he faced his first questions in the Commons as a minister and was a success. But everything did not go according to plan next time after the MP decided to visit a wine-tasting before appearing in the House at 10pm.

Travel: The city of the spirits

It's a place of music, of carnival, of unleashed sexuality and big cigars. Above all, Havana is the home of Santeria, the Afro-Cuban religious cult. So what's a novelist to do but mess with the spirit world, and take the consequences...

Religious dissident freed by Cubans

A JAILED Cuban dissident was freed this week in Havana, the first, and possibly last, release of a political prisoner there this year. But the Cuban Foreign Ministry announced that no further petitions for releases would be considered and a government spokesman said that Cuba would not bow to outside pressure for more pardons

Pan-American Games: Cuban anger at `dirty tricks'

AWAY FROM the track and gym at the Pan American Games in Winnipeg, the Cubans have been unhappy about the amount of attention which has been focused on politics, including possible desertions.

Death is not a lifestyle

Hemingway's centenary brings golf tournaments, lookalike contests and furnishing fabrics. Not surprisingly, none of the merchandising reflects his obsessions with danger and death. Why do they have to turn Hem into Santa Claus?

Nobel winner `copied woman's unknown novel'

A SPANISH schoolteacher once wrote a novel in her spare time and sent it off for fun to a prestigious literary competition. Her manuscript was returned months later, but when she read the winning novel, by Spain's 1989 Nobel prize winner, Jose Camilo Cela, she was horrified to discover it bore a strong likeness to her own.
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
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Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick