19-10-2018 Stephen Hendry: ‘I hate the word yips, it trivialises it. It was much more than that’ | Donald McRae

The seven-times world champion on his duels with Davis, Higgins, White and O’Sullivan and how his famed mental strength disintegrated leaving him no choice but to quit“It was a mixture of embarrassment, anger, frustration, sadness, everything,” Stephen Hendry says as he remembers how his dominance of snooker unravelled into, in his mind, a shambling wreck of a game. When the end came, in the quarter-finals of the 2012 world championships, Hendry was so besieged by psychological demons “there was nothing positive left”.Hendry’s favourite sportsmen are Tiger Woods, Michael Schumacher, Nick Faldo and AP McCoy and he was once as imperious as they had been. He holds the record for the most world titles, with all seven being won in the 1990s, and he was world No 1 for eight successive seasons. But the great champions feel it most when vulnerability takes over. Continue reading...

19-10-2018 From the fast lane, to the catwalk to the spa - Asher-Smith's stellar 2018

'I'm not famous,' insists British sprinter Dina Asher-Smith but after the gold medals and catwalk shows of 2018 it is hard to agree.

19-10-2018 LeBron James arrives in LA with his greatness confirmed. What does he do now?

The spectacle of his late career will be as much about watching the emergence of LeBron the cultural figure as the twilight of LeBron the playerAt the end of each preview for The Shop, LeBron James’s new discussion show on HBO, appears the tagline, “I am more than an athlete.” On a purely factual basis this is difficult to dispute: James, like all of us, contains multitudes. But James is going after more than mere facts. In the same way that Barcelona fancies itself not only a football club but a symbol of Catalonian identity, James wants to stake a claim in the public consciousness on something that goes beyond sport. In his mind, he is més que un atleta. As this generation’s greatest basketballer embarks on what will likely be the final big challenge of his playing career – restoring a faded Lakers franchise to its perch atop the NBA – the question is: how much more? James has shaved on-court expectations, stressing the inexperience of his supporting cast this season. The Lakers have been bad in recent years, though under young coach Luke Walton they’ve at least begun a mild recovery from 2015-16, when they went 17–65 to record their worst season ever. Thanks to favorable draft picks, there’s now plenty of raw talent. Brandon Ingram, who gets about the court with the languid elasticity of a semi-animated linguine, has set himself the goal of being an All-Star this season, which is perhaps unrealistic in the hyper-competitive Western Conference but at least shows ambition. Lonzo Ball, the roster’s other starlet, will help share some of the burden in driving offensive play – a luxury James missed in his draining final season with the Cavs. Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Konta wins final-set tie-break to reach Kremlin Cup semi-final

British number one Johanna Konta reaches just her second semi-final this year by beating Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the Kremlin Cup.

19-10-2018 FA urges police and social media companies to act after threats to Karen Carney

• Chelsea player subjected to sickening threats after win• Phil Neville asks Instagram: ‘Are you going to do something?’The Football Association has called on the police and social media companies to help shut down online abuse after the England and Chelsea midfielder Karen Carney was subjected to sickening threats.Phil Neville, the England Women manager, pointed out the abuse Carney had received, sharing an Instagram post which wished “cancer, leukaemia and rape” on the 133-cap player. Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Sport on the BBC: Best of this week's TV & radio coverage

This week's sport on the BBC includes the United States Grand Prix, the NFL International Series and Premier League action, including Chelsea v Man Utd.

19-10-2018 NBA 2018-19 predictions: Greek Freak to peak and Warriors to three-peat

How will LeBron James get on in California? Is Russell Westbrook in decline? Can anyone stop Golden State? Our writers have their sayGiannis Antetokounmpo in Mike Budenholzer’s offense. Milwaukee’s new coach will install a system that complements everything the Greek Freak does well – which is practically everything – and mask his one flaw: perimeter shooting. If it works, Antetokounmpo’s surges up the court will resemble an alien attack rather than a basketball offense. OC Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Smith and Carlos embodied many African Americans' Summer of Love and Reckoning

Fifty years ago this week, two proud Olympians raised their fists to call attention to social injustices. Their gesture made my heart swell with prideIn the summer of 1967, 100,000 fashion-forward and social-forward youth gathered in San Francisco in what has famously been called the Summer of Love. Similar gatherings occurred throughout the US, Canada, and Europe, all in an effort to reject the Vietnam War, consumerism, and governments who had proven less than forthright, while promoting the ideals of love, kindness, and compassion. The Summer of Love has been branded and celebrated as a symbol of the 60s. African Americans had another name for that summer: the Long, Hot Summer of 1967. During that time, 150 black communities burned in riots, with 26 people killed in Newark, New Jersey, and 43 in Detroit. By the following summer, Dr Martin Luther King Jr and Bobby Kennedy, two guiding lights in civil rights, had been assassinated. Black people were not feeling the love. That’s the context for the 1968 Summer Olympics when, 50 years ago this week, Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their gloved fists from the podium in Mexico City, medals dangling from their necks, while the US national anthem played. To many African Americans, that was the Summer of Love – and Pride, and Reckoning. Related: Colin Kaepernick sounds the alarm against a re-emerging evil | Richard Williams Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Unai Emery urges Aaron Ramsey to keep focus despite contract position

• Midfielder set to leave at end of season or in January• ‘Individual things are not for now,’ Arsenal manager saysUnai Emery has challenged Aaron Ramsey to keep his performances up while his contract runs down. The midfielder, whose deal expires in the summer with negotiations frozen, is keen to see out the season at Arsenal rather than leave in January, and Emery’s only concern is that Ramsey’s performances and motivation stay on track.“I want his performance to be like another player,” the manager said. “At the last match he started on the bench, played 35 minutes. For Monday against Leicester if he starts in first XI or the bench his focus must be to help us in the match, the same as any player.” Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Messi & Ronaldo then ... ? Vote for your third-best player in the world

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have won the past 10 men's Ballon d'Or awards - but who did you decide is the third-best player in the world?

19-10-2018 Watch: Pakistan batsman run out after thinking ball had gone to boundary

Pakistan batsman Azhar Ali is run out in bizarre circumstances, after mistakenly thinking the ball had reached the boundary on the third day of the second Test with Australia.

19-10-2018 Premier League predictions: Lawro v cricket legend Shane Warne

BBC Sport football pundit Mark Lawrenson takes on Australia cricket legend Shane Warne to predict this weekend's Premier League results.

19-10-2018 The 10 most improved players in the Premier League this season

Eden Hazard, Gylfi Sigurdsson, James Milner and Callum Wilson have stepped it up this seasonBy Martin Laurence for WhoScoredÉtienne Capoue can be a frustrating player at times. He has real quality, which he showed occasionally in his unsuccessful spell at Tottenham, but this is his longest run of consistently strong performances in the Premier League. He has forged a solid midfield partnership with Abdoulaye Doucouré at Watford and has even overshadowed his fellow Frenchman, the club’s player of last season. Capoue’s total of 53 tackles and interceptions is second only to Idrissa Gueye (54) in the league this season and, having fallen out of favour under Marco Silva, he is now among the first names on Javi Gracia’s teamsheet. Rating: 7.13, up 0.38 on last season. Continue reading...

19-10-2018 European club rugby surprises may offer barometer in World Cup year | The Breakdown

From next week international squad players in Europe will spend more time with their countries than with their clubs and lessons learned at highest level of club rugby could be vitalThe result of a weekend in Europe that kicked convention high into the stand came in Paris, where a Worcester side laced with academy players achieved a bonus-point Challenge Cup victory over Stade Français, who lie second in the Top 14.Europe, in the form of the Champions Cup, is regarded as being close to international standard, exemplified by teams such as Leinster and Saracens. But over the years it has not been that reliable a barometer for Test rugby, although the last three winners of the tournament have represented the countries that took the Six Nations title. Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Johanna Konta into Kremlin Cup semi-finals after battling win

British No 1 into second WTA semi-final of yearSimona Halep withdraws from WTA Finals The British No 1 Johanna Konta battled past Aliaksandra Sasnovich in three sets at the Kremlin Cup in Moscow to make just her second WTA semi-final of the year.After the first two sets were won 6-2, both players turned up the quality in the third but it was Konta who edged out the world No 31, 7-6 (7-2) in the decider. Konta will now play the Russian sixth seed Daria Kasatkina in the last four. The welcome win for 27-year-old comes a week after she split with her coach Michael Joyce. She is now working with Dimitri Zavialoff. Continue reading...

19-10-2018 Hamilton in all-time top five F1 drivers - Alonso

Four-time world champion Lewis Hamilton is one of the five greatest champions in Formula 1 history, says Fernando Alonso.

19-10-2018 Scottish Premiership: Does Scotland have a title race this season?

One of four teams could be top of the Premiership this weekend but what can the table after eight games tell us about how it might end?

19-10-2018 Fifty years on: Bob Beamon smashes long jump world record at Mexico Olympics

Lynn Davies looks back 50 years ago today, when Bob Beamon smashed the long jump world record at the Mexico Olympics.