Category Archives: Sports

Paint the town blue: Amazing pictures as 100,000 turn out for City’s Premier League trophy parade

“I’m still in a bit of shock, we all are,” said James Milner

Blue moon rising: players and fans celebrate in style

Blue moon rising: players and fans celebrate in style

Ecstatic Manchester City players hailed their fans yesterday for turning out to celebrate – and for their backing throughout the season.

Around 100,000 lined the streets for the ­champions’ victory parade and City keeper Joe Hart said: “Sunday was an ­incredible day but the support we’ve seen here on the streets almost matches it. The fans are brilliant.

“I’m just going to enjoy today as much as I can and then we’ll begin again next season.

Gareth Barry added: “Days like these are why we came to City and it’s just fantastic. Our fans have always been amazing and they’re showing it here today. I’ve memories I’ll treasure for the rest of my career.”

Vincent Kompany lifts the trophy for the second time in two days

Vincent Kompany lifts the trophy for the second time in two days

James Milner was also overwhelmed – and yet to come to terms with being a title-winner.

“I’m still in a bit of shock, we all are,” he said.

“It’s still hard to believe we were 2-1 down going into injury time so it’s going to take a while to sink in.”

Boss Roberto Mancini had the final word: “I love our supporters – they’re incredible and that’s who we won it for.”

‘RIP Fergie’: Watch video of Carlos Tevez’s controversial banner held up during Manchester City bus parade

General view of Manchester City fans gathering in Albert Square before the parade

General view of Manchester City fans gathering in Albert Square before the parade

Manchester City fans wear shirts displaying the messages "Champions" and "Noisy Neighbour" as they look on in front of Manchester Town Hall

Manchester City fans wear shirts displaying the messages “Champions” and “Noisy Neighbour” as they look on in front of Manchester Town Hall

Fans gather as players and staff of Manchester City prepare to parade the English Premier League Trophy through the city centre from an open-top bus

Fans gather as players and staff of Manchester City prepare to parade the English Premier League Trophy through the city centre from an open-top bus

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[mirror.co.uk]

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Going Kwakers: Why I’m in love with Kawasaki’s new ZZR1400

It has so much power you barely have to nudge the throttle to feel the back end squirming about

Sleek: Handling and safety functions are impressive

Sleek: Handling and safety functions are impressive

I’ve just taken delivery of the world’s fastest motorcycle.

It’s the Kawasaki ZZR1400 and I’m in love with it already.

It’s a fantastic bike with so much power that you barely have to nudge the throttle to feel the back end squirming about.

It’s not a superbike, more of a ­supertourer.

Like several European car makers (Audi, BMW and Merc) that voluntarily restrict their cars to a top speed of 155mph, the Japanese bike manufacturers limit the top speed of their machines.

Supertourer: Richard Hammond loves the new ZZR1400 already

Supertourer: Richard Hammond loves the new ZZR1400 already

But since that limit is 186mph, it’s pretty meaningless.

Quite how fast the ZZR1400 would go if uncorked I don’t know – not least because I obviously haven’t ridden it flat out because there isn’t a race track or piece of runway long enough in the UK to do so – but the four-cylinder motor kicks out a massive 207bhp, so 200mph is probably possible.

Until recently, I owned a Suzuki ­Hayabusa, to which I fitted a top box and panniers. It looked a bit odd but made it a brilliant bike for a quick commute between Gloucestershire and London – so I’ll do the same with the Kwacker.

The handling is really good, the seat is comfortable and you can get almost 200 miles from a tankful of petrol. The big difference between the two bikes is that the ZZR1400 is fitted with a very s­ophisticated traction control system that has two sport settings and a safety setting.

Full throttle: You just need a nudge to feel the roar

Full throttle: You just need a nudge to feel the roar

Call me a wimp if you like but when you’re riding in the rain, your hands are cold, you’re looking out for people in cars doing something stupid and you have more power in your right hand than Ford’s Sierra Cosworth had, a bit of electronic help is a pretty welcome thing.

The ZZR1400 isn’t the best-looking bike in the world and it’ll be even less pretty when I’ve stuck the luggage on it, but that’s not the end of the world because I’ve got some bikes in my ever-increasing collection that do look amazing.

I bought the Kawasaki to do a job and it does it brilliantly.

I might buy a set of Akrapovic exhausts for the bike because it’s a bit quiet in town and I worry about pedestrians ­stepping into the road.

Overhead view: It costs a lot of cash

Overhead view: It costs a lot of cash

Photos credit to > Kawasaki

Mind you, the pipes cost £1,800, which is a bit painful when you’ve just spent £11,499 on the bike itself.

It’s lots of money, but then the Bugatti Veyron, which is the fastest car in the world, costs rather more than that.

[mirror.co.uk]


The Liver Bird is back! Liverpool’s new kit nods to golden era

Anfield side unveil their first Warrior Sports strip

Golden boy: Steven Gerrard in the new Liverpool kit

Golden boy: Steven Gerrard in the new Liverpool kit

Liverpool’s new kit has an old look – with a return for the Liver Bird club crest from their glory days.

Manufacturers Warrior Sports, who have paid the Anfield club an incredible £25m per season, have gone back to the classic badge and dumped the newer version, which featured an image of the Shankly Gates, the ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ motto and two Justice flames honouring the Hillsborough campaign.

Flying home: The gold Liver bird is back on Liverpool's shirts

Flying home: The gold Liver bird is back on Liverpool’s shirts

Sock it to 'em: The rest of the kit taks a classic approach

Sock it to ’em: The rest of the kit taks a classic approach

Photos credit to > Liverpool FC

The club’s publicity campaign for the new look claims: “It’s inspired by greatness. It’s modern tradition. It’s unapologetically Liverpool FC. It will make you feel 7ft tall.”

The kit is the first collaboration with Boston-based company Warrior Sports, a £25m-a-year partnership which broke British records when its was announced last year.

Old look: The badge has been replaced

Old look: The badge has been replaced

They expect to sell over 900,000 new shirts – making Liverpool’s kit the fourth-biggest seller in world football behind Manchester United, Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The kit can be preordered on Liverpool’s website.

Dalglish stays: Liverpool boss won’t be axed… but his budget will

[mirror.co.uk]


Real-life mermaid swims with whales using very own fish tail – and holds breath for two minutes on deep sea dives

Hannah, 36, was inspired to make first tail after watching Daryl Hannah in mermaid film Splash

By DEBORAH ARTHURS

Underwater swimmer Hannah Fraser has been fascinated with mermaids since she was three years old. 

Hannah, 36, an Australian who now lives in LA, made her first mermaid tail at the age of nine, after seeing the film Splash with Daryl Hannah. 

Now she works as a model, actress and performer, swimming with whales, dolphins, stingrays and even sharks.

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Stunning: Photographer Ted Grambeau captured beautiful photographs of 36-year-old Hannah Fraser swimming with whales in the wild to promote their conservation

Stunning: Photographer Ted Grambeau captured beautiful photographs of 36-year-old Hannah Fraser swimming with whales in the wild to promote their conservation

Inspired: Hannah, an Australian who now lives in LA, made her first mermaid tail at the age of nine, after seeing the film Splash with Daryl Hannah

Inspired: Hannah, an Australian who now lives in LA, made her first mermaid tail at the age of nine, after seeing the film Splash with Daryl Hannah

Hannah can hold her breath for up to two minutes and swim to depths of 45 feet, allowing her to move like a real mermaid, without the restraints of diving gear.

In these images she is seen swimming with humpback whales off Vava’u Island, Tonga, to promote marine conservation and oppose whale hunting.

Hannah and her then husband Dave Rastovich, a surfer, were upset and frustrated after International Whaling Commission meetings where whaling nations were allowed to continue their slaughter under the guise of ‘scientific research’.

‘It was depressing and we wanted to go somewhere to connect with the w

hales and to raise awareness,’ said Hannah.

Fish out of water: Deep sea swimmer Hannah Fraser has been fascinated with mermaids since she was three years old and can swim to great depths using her homemade tail. Now Hannah works as a model, actress and performer, swimming with whales, dolphins, stingrays and sharks

Feisty fish: Hannah has been confronted by sharks while underwater, but says she scared them off with a frightening face

Feisty fish: Hannah has been confronted by sharks while underwater, but says she scared them off with a frightening face

The couple flew to Tonga with photographer Ted Grambeau, who was able to capture beautiful images of humpbacks swimming with Hannah, in scenes documented by filmmaker Bali Strickland.

‘A baby humpback was curious and actually came up to me,’ said Hannah.

‘The whales were singing so loudly and the baby whale was squealing, which sounds even louder under the water. It was a very powerful experience.’

Many photographs for anti-whaling campaigns show brutal acts including harpooning and whales being winched onto ships, which can be too horrific for ordinary observers.

But Ted’s images appear in the children’s book, The Surfer and the Mermaid, and aim to inspire whale conservation. He added: ‘All the shots of Hannah are really poetic – really just surreal, beautiful shots.’

In 2007, Hannah swam in the sea in Taiji, Japan, with 30 surfers, celebrities and musicians, in an attempt to halt the ruthless slaughter of thousands of dolphins by local fishermen.

Hannah remembers: ‘Half of the dolphins had been caught and the others were roped off in the middle of the bay to be herded towards the fishermen.

Impressive: Underwater images show Hannah swimming with dolphins and whales, which she says gravitate towards her

Impressive: Underwater images show Hannah swimming with dolphins and whales, which she says gravitate towards her

Deep blue: Hannah is seen here swimming with humpback whales off Vava'u Island, Tonga, to raise awareness of marine life and oppose whale hunting

Deep blue: Hannah is seen here swimming with humpback whales off Vava’u Island, Tonga, to raise awareness of marine life and oppose whale hunting

Spreading her message: Filmmaker Rob Benavides is currently shooting a documentary about Hannah, which will feature her work as a mermaid and sea-life campaigner

Spreading her message: Filmmaker Rob Benavides is currently shooting a documentary about Hannah, which will feature her work as a mermaid and sea-life campaigner

‘Instead of being frightened, the dolphins were trying to come closer to us in their net, as if they knew we wanted to help them. 

But at this point the fishermen were hitting us with sticks and moving their boat propellers towards us. We couldn’t get any closer and we couldn’t save the dolphins.

‘It was indescribable to see this happening and have to abandon them. I cried for hours afterwards. It was hard to be part of the human race at the point.’

Two years later, in 2009, Hannah swam in her tail with 14ft Great White Sharks off Guadalupe island, Mexico.

‘I thought if I was going to be a professional mermaid I’d have to face my fear of sharks,’ she admitted.

After trying out the shark-infested waters in scuba gear, Hannah was about to put on her mermaid tail, when one of the sharks became trapped in the diver’s cage.

 ‘Luckily the shark freed itself in time. But it made me realise it was safer not to use the cage,’ she said.

‘I got my tail on and got into the water. I was supposed to be surrounded by divers, but in the mermaid tail I swim much faster than anyone else. I realised I was on my own, but I stayed calm.’

She added: ‘Another time a shark turned round and came towards me, so I made a scary face and screamed at it in the water. Amazingly I scared it off. I felt invincible for months afterwards.’

Filmmaker Rob Benavides is currently shooting a documentary about Hannah’s life, which will feature her work as a model, diver, and sea-life campaigner.

‘One of the imperative messages in marine conservation right now is overfishing,’ she said. ‘We should be asking countries to better regulate their fishing industries.

We shouldn’t be eating any fish, but if any it should be only little ones. Large fish take years to grow and reach maturity. If we continue taking them from the ocean it will be a long time before stocks are replenished.’

Hannah Fraser is featured in a new children’s book Last Night I Swam With A Mermaid by Kimberley Muller.

Inspiration: Hannah says she made her first fish tail after seeing Daryl Hannah play a mermaid in the 1984 film Splash

Inspiration: Hannah says she made her first fish tail after seeing Daryl Hannah play a mermaid in the 1984 film Splash


“The fight is off!”: Amir Khan reveals the Lamont Peterson Lamont Peterson will NOT go ahead

Khan took to Twitter to announce the bout would not go ahead – and laid the blame solely at Peterson’s door

 Rematch off: Lamont and Khan were due to fight on May 19

Rematch off: Lamont and Khan were due to fight on May 19

Amir Khan’s world light-welterweight title fight against Lamont Peterson – scheduled for May 19 – has been called off following the American’s failed drug test.

The British boxer’s US promoter Richard Schaefer revealed earlier this week that Peterson tested positive for a banned steroid.

It cast doubt on whether the Las Vegas showdown would go ahead as the Nevada State Athletic Commission considered whether to grant him a licence.

Khan took to Twitter just before midnight tonight to announce the bout would not go ahead – and laid the blame solely at Peterson’s door.

He posted: “The fight is off! sorry everyone the only person to blame is @kingpete26 I’ll be looking for a opponent to fight June 30th.”

Khan complained to the WBA, IBF and Washington DC commission after losing his light-welterweight titles to Peterson in the American’s hometown, Washington, last year.

He highlighted several grievances, chiefly referee Joseph Cooper’s deduction of two points, the judges’ scoring of the bout and the unexplained presence of ‘mystery man’ Mustafa Ameen at ringside.

[mirror.co.uk]


Manchester City 1-0 Manchester United: Blue Moon rises to the top of the table

Vincent Kompany’s header settles titanic derby to hand title advantage to Mancini’s men

Manchester City's Vincent Kompany scores & celebrates

Manchester City's Vincent Kompany scores & celebrates

The blue moon has risen. The new order is upon us.

And as the Achilles Heel that Sir Alex Ferguson has refused to acknowledge all season brought about United’s downfall and City’s triumph last night, there could be no Old Trafford complaints.

Fergie’s faith in David De Gea has been steadfast but when it mattered more than ever, the Spaniard capsized United’s title ship.

Deep into first half stoppage time as David Silva prepared to deliver a corner, De Gea was so obsessed with Carlos Tevez that, when Vincent Kompany lost marker Chris Smalling, the Spanish keeper was powerless to prevent the City skipper scoring the one goal that surpassed, in meaning, all six City claimed in October.

Driven on by the remarkable Yaya Toure, the side that was written off by most, including Roberto Mancini just a few weeks ago, are now just two games, 13 days, from ending the 34-year wait and being crowned the best in the country.

Of course, it is not done and dusted yet. Not by a long chalk.

Yet United did not have a shot worthy of the name. Only the most red-eyed of watchers could deny City deserved their victory, are rightly top of the pile, justifiably masters of their own destiny.

It was always likely to be nervous and twitchy but while Ferguson’s selection of Park Ji-Sung in a five-man midfield, with Rooney alone up front, might have ceded the advantage, City initially struggled to take it.

A dodgy punch by Joe Hart from Nani’s deflected cross inside 70 seconds only added to the palpable tension, City relieved that Michael Carrick’s drive thumped into Kompany.

Slowly, though, City were able to get Samir Nasri, Silva, Sergio Aguero and Tevez into the game, sniping runs that asked more serious questions of Rio Ferdinand and Co and Yaya Toure and Gareth Barry took more of a grip.

Not that either keeper was really tested in the opening spell, the highlights of which were a sliding Ferdinand clearance after Tevez briefly escaped down the right and Kompany’s soft booking for making contact with Rooney after the ball had gone.

City’s first shot took 25 minutes to come, Rooney’s attempted clearance ballooning high into the air with Joleon Lescott flicking back into the danger area but Aguero blazing high and wide of David De Gea’s goal.

Rooney was starting to get irritated as City, Nasri to the fore, threatened.

Aguero, twisting inside the box, could not find sufficient purchase on his shot after Nasri teased the ball in from the right before Pablo Zabaleta, who walked through Patrice Evra, swung a weak left foot as the ball was set to fall onto Aguero’s right.

Rooney retrieved Nani’s deep cross but there was nobody there to apply the finishing touch before Park smashed a clever short-corner move miles too high.

And then, in stoppage time, the red line was breached.

Nasri’s cross was turned behind. Silva swung in the corner, De Gea stayed on his line and with Chris Smalling caught under the ball, Kompany’s header ripped into the back of the net to send the Etihad into meltdown.

United, struggling all game down their left as Nasri and Zabaleta linked, needed to change things.

But while Hart fumbled a speculative Nani shot, City were more poised in possession, more potent in attack.

Nasri, fed by Barry, turned to shoot wide before Ferguson acted, though sending Danny Welbeck on for Park before the hour seemed an admission of a tactical and strategic error.

At least, for the first time, Rooney had company against Kompany yet United lacked any precision in their final ball and City remained in charge, De Gea kicking away Toure’s left-wing cross.

Mancini hooked Tevez, sending on Nigel De Jong to reinforce midfield, another bulwark against a late siege although Toure, a force of nature, was twice so close after trademark runs and 25-yarders that fizzed past the frame of the goal.

De Jong’s foul on Welbeck saw Fergie and Mancini going toe to toe, hammer and tongs, with fourth official Mike Jones intervening between the pair before each was dragged away.

City kept coming, De Gea foiling Gael Clichy, Nasri denied as he tried to walk the ball in.

Not even five minutes of “Fergie time” could alter this one. City are within touching distance of glory.

A Manchester City fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere with a Manchester United fan prior to the Barclays Premier League match

A Manchester City fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere with a Manchester United fan prior to the Barclays Premier League match

Vincent Kompany (C) scores the first goal for Manchester City

Vincent Kompany (C) scores the first goal for Manchester City

Man City's Vincent Kompany scores their first goal

Man City's Vincent Kompany scores their first goal

Diego Maradona watches the action during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United

Diego Maradona watches the action during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United

Wayne Rooney lies on the floor holding his ankle

Wayne Rooney lies on the floor holding his ankle

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[mirror.co.uk]


The Madchester derby! Watch the Top 20 moments from great City vs United clashes

From beautiful goals to horrific tackles, re-live the best moments from past Manchester derbies in our video special

20 amazing Manchester derby moments

20 amazing Manchester derby moments

All eyes will be on Old Trafford this weekend for the Manchester derby, with City looking to consolidate their position above cross-town rivals United at the top of the Premier League table.

The atmosphere will be electric, and the players usually deliver on the pitch, too. Here’s our rundown of the top 20 Manchester derby moments…

20) September 14 1985 was a bad day for the Blue half of Manchester. A suspiciously large number of United fans managed to grab tickets in the City end – you can see them being led to safety in this clip – and Billy McNeill’s newly-promoted side were hammered on the way back down.

19) The events of the final Maine Road meeting of the sides, on 9/11/2002, are commemorated in the splendid poem which begins: “Derby day, the scores were level. Then the Goat was fed by Neville”

18) Newly promoted to the Premier League officials list, George-out-of-George-And-Mildred lookalike Alan Wiley made a name for himself in a 1995 FA Cup derby when, with City deservedly leading 1-0 just before halftime, he turned the game with possibly the worst refereeing decision ever seen at Old Trafford. Which, to be fair, is saying something.

Keep Reading >>

[mirror.co.uk]


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