Hicks' struggle of nerve

You could have got a good price two weeks ago on the words "the toast of Tavistock" becoming a clich. Come to think of it, there was little reason to suppose the small market town on the edge of Dartmoor would be mentioned at all.

Swail suffers touch of the blues

For a man who normally expresses emotions with a raised eyebrow and a quizzical smile, it was the equivalent of Pat Cash's climb through the crowd to celebrate his Wimbledon victory. As he made it to the quarter- finals of the Embassy World Championship last night, the fifth seed thumped the air and shouted with relief.

White gets serious in title pursuit

ALL THAT it needs is for Jimmy White to keep on playing like this, all the way to the final of the Embassy World Championship next weekend. Whatever the background to his first-round victory over Peter Francisco, White's attitude in the opening session of his second-round match at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield yesterday was that of a man preparing to fulfil his destiny, and to drag the entire sport along with him, back to the top of the ratings.

Ebdon quick to progress

SNOOKER

White is cleared in betting inquiry

The cloud hanging over the Embassy World Snooker Championship did not clear yesterday but at least it did not get thicker. Jimmy White was eliminated from an investigation into match-fixing while Peter Francisco must wait to see if he too will be exonerated.

SNOOKER: Griffiths doubts betting `scam'

Terry Griffiths, cleared of any involvement in the last alleged snooker betting scandal to be investigated, does not believe Jimmy White's match against Peter Francisco at the world championship was fixed.

Snookered by the bookies

ANOTHER VIEW

Snooker stars in rigging inquiry

Snooker's great fear, that results might be rigged between players, reared its head yesterday when the sport's governing body, the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association, announced an inquiry into Jimmy White's victory over Peter Francisco in the world championships at Sheffield.

White wins after non-vintage show

SNOOKER

Davis gains early break

THE leading players can sometimes allow the peculiar anxiety of a first-round match at the world championship to get on top of them. That is what happened to James Wattana and Ken Doherty, seeded 3 and 7 respectively, when their defeats here yesterday marked the first two upsets in the 1995 event.

SNOOKER: Parrott has hold over O'Sullivan

SNOOKER

OVERHEARD : ARTS

He [Ron Wood] bought this place in Ireland but there wasn't a pub close enough for his liking. So he built one at the bottom of his garden. He's very enterprising that way is Ronnie.

Snooker: Hairy White cut short

At the 21st anniversary of the Benson and Hedges Masters, the first of the semi-finals flashed by like an express train. John Higgins of Scotland became the first wild card player in the tournament to reach the final, beating Jimmy White six frames to one. Blink and you would have missed it, although you probably would not have regretted that. It was one of White's most dismal performances in what has of late become a string of them.

You know you love it...

So boys were always lads, after all: Jojo Moyes on the rise and rise of lewd, lager-fuelled Loaded If it were human, it would be drunk; a leering, trainer-wearing yob, who, having lurched into a party of Hugo Boss-suited executives, is ranting about the joys of drinking, pulling and Ryan Giggs. But far from turning away in disgust, the sharp-suited executives are peeling off their new-man credentials and joining him.
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