Belgium’s Manon De Roey storms to victory at Aramco Team Series - Bangkok

Belgium’s Manon De Roey storms to victory at Aramco Team Series - Bangkok
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Manon De Roey of Belgium with the trophy after winning the individual title in the Aramco Team Series - Bangkok. (Golf Saudi)
Belgium’s Manon De Roey storms to victory at Aramco Team Series - Bangkok
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Sweden's Johanna Gustavsson on the way to a second place finish in the ATS-Bangkok at the Thai Country Club. (Golf Saudi)
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Updated 15 May 2022

Belgium’s Manon De Roey storms to victory at Aramco Team Series - Bangkok

Belgium’s Manon De Roey storms to victory at Aramco Team Series - Bangkok
  • This was the first Aramco Team Series tournament to run under 2022’s new format, in which its $500,000 prize-fund team element – where three LET professionals team up with an amateur golfer – is battled out over only 36 holes

BANGKOK: Belgium’s Manon De Roey captured the Ladies European Tour’s first Aramco Team Series individual title of the season on Saturday after carding a bogey-free 6-under par closing round at Thai Country Club.

De Roey kept her cool in stifling temperatures to topple local hero and overnight leader Patty Tavatanakit and earn her first career win.

World No. 13 Tavatanakit led by two after the second round of the inaugural Aramco Team Series – Bangkok presented by Public Investment Fund, firmly cementing her as favorite to claim the crown in the three-day event’s $500,000 individual competition.

But as the 2021 ANA Inspiration champion struggled to a final day 1-over-73, playing partner De Roey flourished, finding six birdies in a solid 66 as she romped to a three-shot victory and her maiden Tour title.

“It feels great,” said De Roey – the first Belgian to win an LET title in 25 years. “I was waiting for this for a long time so I’m very happy.

“It was actually a really good day. I started quite strongly. I was hitting it quite close, made birdie on the second. I just stayed patient and I dropped in some good putts.

“I’ve been working hard on my game, just trying to stay patient for the win. I was really hoping for this last year, so I'm really happy I got it now this year.”

The 30-year-old added: “I have a pretty good record in the Aramco Team Series events – I've picked good teams! But I love it. The first few days I really played for the team. They really pushed to make a lot of birdies. Yeah, super happy. I mean, it’s been a long time for me. I fought really hard and I'm happy I came through.”

Three solid under-par rounds from Johanna Gustavsson were enough to earn the Swede a second place finish as her strong early season form continued in the Thai capital.

“It's been a good week,” said Gustavsson. “I've had fun with the girls in the team event, and today was very fun. I really enjoyed playing with Ariya [Jutanugarn] and Tiia [Koivisto]. 

“My putting has been decent. Yesterday, I did struggle a little bit, but I got through it. Then I holed a lot of putts in the middle of the round, which was nice. Today, that was my only concern, but I thought I got through it pretty nicely and I'm proud of that and happy with it.” 

The Aramco Team Series - Bangkok was only the third LET event of the season for Scotland’s Kylie Henry, who returned to professional competition in March following four months out of the game with a broken elbow.

A second 3-under 69 in three days took her to 8-under for the week, and a share of third spot alongside hometown hero Tavatanakit.

“I played really solid today,” said Henry, who injured herself when she slipped coming out of a bath last November. “I felt like I could really trust my swing all week, so I was really happy with my long game. 

“I putted mostly good. Missed a few out there, but, yeah, I guess that's going to happen sometimes. On the whole, I'm absolutely delighted.”

Played over three days, this was the first Aramco Team Series tournament to run under 2022’s new format, in which its $500,000 prize-fund team element – where three LET professionals team up with an amateur golfer – is battled out over only 36 holes.

That title was claimed a day earlier by Team Hillier: Australian Whitney Hillier, Krista Bakker of Finland, Thailand’s Chonlada Chayanun, and Bangkok businessman Pattanan Amatanon.

Now up to five events per season, the Aramco Team Series next heads to the UK for the Aramco Team Series – London, which will take place at Centurion Club in St. Albans, June 16-18. 

That will be followed by the Aramco Team Series – Sotogrande (La Reserva Club De Sotogrande, Aug. 18-20), the Aramco Team Series – New York (Venue TBC, Oct. 13-15) and the Aramco Team Series – Jeddah (Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, Nov. 9-11).

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For more information, visit www.aramcoteamseries.com


Formula E returns to Morocco for season eight, round 10 at Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan

Formula E returns to Morocco for season eight, round 10 at Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan
Updated 01 July 2022

Formula E returns to Morocco for season eight, round 10 at Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan

Formula E returns to Morocco for season eight, round 10 at Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan
  • Mercedes-EQ’s Stoffel Vandoorne leads the way in the Drivers’ World Championship with a five-point advantage over nearest challenger and double champion Jean-Eric Vergne of DS TECHEETAH

SAUDI ARABIA: The ABB FIA Formula E World Championship returns to Marrakesh on Saturday for round 10 in the 16-race season, with four drivers pulling ahead in the battle for the drivers’ title.

Going into the Marrakesh E-Prix at the Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan, Mercedes-EQ’s Stoffel Vandoorne leads the way in the Drivers’ World Championship with a five-point advantage over nearest challenger and double champion Jean-Eric Vergne (DS TECHEETAH).

Edoardo Mortara (ROKiT Venturi Racing) is two points back in third place, while Mitch Evans (Jaguar TCS Racing), who won last time out in Jakarta, sits fourth, but only 12 points back from the standings lead.

With a maximum of 29 points on offer in Marrakesh, any one of those four drivers could lead the championship come the chequered flag on Saturday,

Evans’ win in Indonesia squeezed the margins splitting the top four, with Mortara and Vergne also making the podium last time around to pile the pressure on points pacesetter Vandoorne.

Consistency is key in Formula E if any driver is to assemble a run at the World Championship. The Belgian has finished outside the top five just twice in nine rounds, though both Evans and Mortara have scored in all but two races this season, while Vergne has never failed to tally.

The Atlas mountains provide the backdrop for Formula E’s fifth trip to the city’s centuries-old Agdal district, with the first Marrakesh E-Prix taking place in 2016. The track follows the Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan — named after the crown prince of Morocco — before spilling out onto the streets of Marrakesh’s hotel district.

Renowned for being an energy-zapping circuit, this fast and highly technical track features 12 turns, three straights and a series of bends completing a track length of 2.971 kilometers.

Last time out in Morocco was magic for Antonio Felix da Costa and DS TECHEETAH who dominated proceedings, with victory setting in motion a run to the 2019-20 championship trophy.

Sebastien Buemi (Nissan e.dams) sealed the win on Formula E’s inaugural visit in 2016, with Felix Rosenqvist and Jerome D’Ambrosio taking back-to-back victories for Mahindra Racing in 2018 and 2019 before da Costa fired his season six title charge into life a year later here.


Revamped Extreme E set for NEOM Island X Prix in Sardinia

Revamped Extreme E set for NEOM Island X Prix in Sardinia
Updated 01 July 2022

Revamped Extreme E set for NEOM Island X Prix in Sardinia

Revamped Extreme E set for NEOM Island X Prix in Sardinia
  • Automobile Club d’Italia and Regione Sardegna co-organizing event

RIYADH: The countdown is on to the first-ever double-header Extreme E event, as the championship returns to the Italian island of Sardinia for a summer showdown of back-to-back racing on July 6-7 and July 9-10.

NEOM’s title sponsorship of the Island X Prix follows the announcement that Extreme E has entered into a multi-year relationship with ENOWA, NEOM’s energy, water, and hydrogen subsidiary, to introduce green hydrogen power to their global sustainable racing series.

Extreme E continues to showcase innovative sustainable solutions, whether they demonstrate the full potential of e-SUVs or deliver legacy programs at race locations.

The event will be returning to the Season 1 location of the army training area at Capo Teulada in Sulcis-Iglesiente. The Teulada will provide a challenging backdrop for the course, which measures around 7 kilometers.

Due to the hot summer conditions in July, the terrain will be much drier than last year’s Enel X Island X Prix, with the drivers having to navigate a harder, more compact surface riddled with rocks, bushes, and dry riverbeds cracked from the heat.

The purpose-driven message of the series will focus on blue and green carbon restoration in Sardinia, continuing to work alongside the MEDSEA Foundation (Mediterranean Sea and Coast Foundation) to support two significant projects.

For Round Two, the first project explores green carbon. The sport-for-purpose championship will be returning to Sennariolo to visit the communities affected by the devastating wildfires of 2021.

As for Round Three, the second project supports seagrass conservation,  mitigating the detrimental effects of blue carbon in Mediterranean waters.

Extreme E has been working closely with Automobile Club d’Italia - the national sports federation co-organizing and coordinating the event - the Region of Sardinia and its Tourism Department, the Ministry of Defense, and the Italian Army.


Maldini signs new two-year director deal with AC Milan

Maldini signs new two-year director deal with AC Milan
Updated 01 July 2022

Maldini signs new two-year director deal with AC Milan

Maldini signs new two-year director deal with AC Milan
  • Milan icon Maldini's new deal means that the seven-time European champions will keep the duo who built their Scudetto-winning side
  • Maldini worked alongside sporting director Frederic Massara to take Milan from the doldrums to the top of the Italian game

MILAN: Paolo Maldini will stay on as AC Milan’s technical director after signing a new two-year contract, the Serie A champions announced on Friday.
Milan icon Maldini’s new deal means that the seven-time European champions will keep the duo who built their Scudetto-winning side.
Maldini worked alongside sporting director Frederic Massara, who has also signed a two-year extension, to take Milan from the doldrums to the top of the Italian game.
“This deal highlights the importance of continuity we see throughout the club as we continue to strengthen and grow,” Milan said in a statement.
The 54-year-old confirmed late last night that he had signed an extension after weeks of delays which almost led to Milan starting the summer transfer window — which opened in Italy on Friday — without their key men.
He has been critical in Milan signing some of their most important players, one such example being a now-famous meeting in Ibiza which was crucial to bringing Theo Hernandez to the club in 2019.
France left-back Hernandez was a stand-out player in last season’s surprise title win.
Maldini is one of the greatest players in Milan’s history, winning a raft of trophies over a quarter of a century passed entirely with his boyhood club.
He played over 900 times for Milan, winning the European Cup or Champions League five times and claiming seven Serie A titles before retiring in 2009.
That success was not replicated in an Italy jersey despite earning 126 caps, losing in the 1994 World Cup and Euro 2000 finals.
Last month Milan announced that current owners, investment fund Elliott Management, had agreed to sell the club to rival US fund RedBird for 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion).
Milan said that the sale of the club will be completed no later than September.


Mo Salah ends speculation by signing new Liverpool contract

Mo Salah ends speculation by signing new Liverpool contract
Updated 01 July 2022

Mo Salah ends speculation by signing new Liverpool contract

Mo Salah ends speculation by signing new Liverpool contract
  • The Egypt international had entered the final year of his existing contract
  • Salah has scored 156 goals in 254 appearances for the club since arriving in 2017

LIVERPOOL: Mohamed Salah signed a new three-year contract with Liverpool on Friday which will keep him at the club until 2025.
The Egypt international had entered the final year of his existing contract after negotiations over extending his stay dragged on for most of last season.
The 30-year-old forward’s wage demands had been a stumbling block, but a delegation flew out to meet with the player, who is still currently on holiday in the Mediterranean, and came to an agreement which reportedly makes the forward the highest-paid player in the club’s history.
“I feel great and (I am) excited to win trophies with the club. It’s a happy day for everyone,” Salah told the club’s website. “It takes a little bit of time, I think, to renew, but now everything is done so we just need to focus on what’s next. I think you can see in the last five or six years the team was always going (upwards).”
Salah has scored 156 goals in 254 appearances for the club since arriving in 2017 and has helped them win the Premier League, Champions League, Club World Cup, FA Cup and League Cup during that time.
“If I look back to that time when I came (here), the club were not winning many things but I think I told you I had come (here) to win trophies,” Salah said. “I think we have won good trophies together and I think we can do it again.”
Liverpool won the FA Cup and League cup last season but finished second to Manchester City in the Premier League and lost the final of the Champions League to Real Madrid.


Saudi Arabia basketball team secure spot in second round of FIBA World Cup qualifying

Saudi Arabia basketball team secure spot in second round of FIBA World Cup qualifying
Updated 01 July 2022

Saudi Arabia basketball team secure spot in second round of FIBA World Cup qualifying

Saudi Arabia basketball team secure spot in second round of FIBA World Cup qualifying
  • Saudi Arabia remained composed and saw out the game to seal a 69-67 win

LONDON: Saudi Arabia’s basketball team secured their spot in the second round of qualifying for next year’s FIBA World Cup with a come-from-behind win against Indonesia in Jakarta on Friday.

The Saudis were down by 13 points at one point mid-third quarter, but outscored their hosts by 16-2 to lead 49-48 going into the final quarter.

Despite a valiant effort from Indonesia, Saudi Arabia remained composed and saw out the game to seal a 69-67 win, which propelled them to top of their Asia First Round qualifying pool.

The Saudis can go into their preparations for the second round in style if they seal another win on the road when they face Lebanon, who along with Jordan have also qualified for the next phase, in Zouk Mikael on Monday.

Indonesia are co-hosting next year’s basketball World Cup with the Philippines and Japan.