Benitez jeered as Chelsea holds Manchester City

Updated 26 November 2012
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Benitez jeered as Chelsea holds Manchester City

LONDON: Interim manager Rafael Benitez was given a hostile welcome by Chelsea fans angry at Roberto Di Matteo’s sacking when the Spaniard, serenaded with jeers, began his Stamford Bridge reign with a 0-0 draw against Manchester City yesterday.
Chelsea axed the popular Di Matteo on Wednesday — hours after their Champions League defeat by Juventus, which continued their poor run of results, and appointed the former Liverpool man for the rest of the season.
Benitez’s arrival in the dugout shortly before kickoff was greeted by boos with home fans continuing to chant Di Matteo’s name throughout the first half.
Chelsea, now without a Premier League win in five games, improved after a sluggish opening period but created few openings to test City keeper Joe Hart.
City, knocked off top spot by Manchester United’s 3-1 win over Queens Park Rangers on Saturday, closed to within one point in second while Chelsea are fourth, five points behind the leaders.
Jermain Defoe’s double, including a superb first-half strike, and Gareth Bale’s goal just before the hour jolted Tottenham Hotspur out of the doldrums with a 3-1 London derby victory over West Ham United at White Hart Lane.
Southampton moved out of the bottom three with a 2-0 home victory over Newcastle United, ensuring an unhappy return to the south coast club for former Saints manager Alan Pardew, whose Newcastle side are struggling to match last season’s exploits which carried them to a fifth-place finish.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was also unable to get one over former club Swansea City on his return to Wales as the Anfield side continued their mediocre Premier League start with a 0-0 draw at the Liberty Stadium.


Kusal Perera the hero as Sri Lanka pull off stunning run chase to beat South Africa in Durban

Updated 16 February 2019
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Kusal Perera the hero as Sri Lanka pull off stunning run chase to beat South Africa in Durban

DURBAN: Sri Lanka pulled off a stunning against-the-odds run chase to beat South Africa by one wicket in the first Test on Saturday as Kusal Perera almost single-handedly won the game with his 153 not out.
Chasing an unlikely 304, Sri Lanka were 226-9 and seemingly out of it. But a last-wicket partnership of 78 between Perera and Vishwa Fernando took the tourists to a thrilling victory on the fourth day.
Perera scored 68 of those 78 runs, but Fernando hung in for 27 balls for his 6 not out to allow Perera to guide the tourists home.
Sri Lanka’s victory gives them a 1-0 lead in the short two-test series and ends South Africa’s run of seven straight home series wins.
Sri Lanka’s 304-9 was the third-highest successful run chase in nearly 100 years of Test cricket at the Kingsmead ground in Durban.
Perera won it with a late cut down to the boundary for four, prompting Sri Lankan players to sprint from the dressing room and out onto the pitch to congratulate their match winner. Perera removed his helmet and thrust both arms up in the air to celebrate one of the best innings ever by a Sri Lankan.
Sri Lanka have lost their last three series and had two debutants and a new captain for the first test, meaning few people gave the inexperienced visiting team a chance against South Africa.