England v Japan: Mark Wilson of Newcastle on his route to Test success

How hard work and an inspirational teacher propelled Newcastle forward Mark Wilson to become England's autumn break-out success.

16-11-2018

UFC at 25: Things were a lot different back at UFC 1

BBC Sport throws it back to 1993, when the first UFC numbered event featured a boxer with one glove, non-existent weight divisions and a pair of very tight pants.

16-11-2018

Cricketers risk being caught out in quest for life beyond the boundary | Andy Bull

Pally dressing-room habits prove hard to undo for some of those hoping to forge new careers outside the sportIt’s a long way from Burton upon Trent to Galle and in the Hilton at St George’s Park last Thursday you could feel every yard of the gap. Away in Sri Lanka, England had just declared their second innings and were now pressing on towards victory in the first Test. Back in the Midlands, a couple of dozen of their county colleagues were in the Hilton’s Howard Wilkinson suite, listening to a presentation about how to get ahead in sustainable investment. Earlier that morning, they had sat through a talk on how improve their networking and presentation techniques, and later that day they had another scheduled how to build a LinkedIn profile. Outside, the rain beat against the windows. Related: Ben Stokes to bat at three as England look to win series in Kandy Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Premier League to introduce VAR but clubs reject overseas quota cut

• VAR to be implemented from next season• Widespread opposition to plans to cut overseas playersThe Premier League has finally agreed in principle to introduce video assistant referees next season but discussions over increasing homegrown quotas looks set to continue after clubs indicated they were unwilling to reduce the number of foreign players in the event of any Brexit deal.Having opted to extend VAR trials in April, clubs were provided with an update at the shareholders’ meeting on Thursday and have decided to proceed. They will formally make a request to the International Football Association Board and Fifa to use VAR next season. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Farewell to Wayne Rooney brought cheers and a hymn to the new age | Barney Ronay

It was a slightly odd occasion and Rooney’s reappearance in an England shirt provided a reminder how much football has changedIn the end Wayne Rooney got the biggest cheer of the night. Which was, after all, the whole point. With 58 minutes gone there was a roar from the bleachers that almost became a full standing ovation as the crowd rose to clap and gawp, sucking the sweetness from the last of those big Rooney moments.He looked pretty much the same, just a little stiffer in this light and speedy England team. Rooney’s first act was to watch DeAndre Yedlin skim past him on the outside. He leaped for a couple of headers. A bit later a man in a red shirt ran on to the pitch and threw an arm around his shoulder before being led away by stewards, but nobody really seemed to mind much. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Schmidt’s Ireland sense All Blacks scalp as world’s best brace for collision

Ireland are unbeaten at home in 10 games as they prepare for what is potentially the year’s most compelling 80 minutesIt is not every day that Ireland are a good bet to beat the All Blacks. Not just any old bunch of silver ferns, either, but a team unbeaten in Tests on European soil since 2012 and still the world’s No 1 side. New Zealand are knocked from their rankings perch about as often as Steve Hansen fancies doing Strictly Come Dancing.Ireland, though, are increasingly sure-footed on the game’s biggest stages. At home they have not lost in their last 10 Tests, dating back to New Zealand’s contentious 21-9 victory two years ago. Under Joe Schmidt they now march to a different tune to previous Irish squads. The 40-29 victory over the All Blacks in Chicago in 2016 will always be celebrated but their ambitions remain far from satisfied. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Psychology helps Oxtoby close gap between Bristol and WSL’s big-hitters

Tanya Oxtoby’s Indigenous Australian background and scientific training give her coaching a unique perspectiveFootball coaches often like to talk about their individual “journey” towards the dugout but few have followed a route as richly scenic as the long and winding pathway taken by Tanya Oxtoby.The distance between the 36-year-old’s home town of Wickham in Western Australia and her current posting is 8,592 miles and, along the way, Bristol City’s manager has regularly enjoyed branching off to explore some life-enhancing diversions. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

'I want to play better': is 2018 the start of Tom Brady's NFL decline?

The New England Patriots star is still one of the best quarterbacks in the league but, at 41, there are signs he may be slipping from his pedestalIt’s time for that biennial tradition of looking at a couple of bad Tom Brady performances and wondering if this is the beginning of the end for the man, the Patriots dynasty and possibly civilization itself.Hyperbole typically surrounds bad Brady outings: after all, they’re so infrequent, we have to get our kicks in. There is something noticeably different this time, though. It’s not just his age (41), it’s the manner of the performances. It’s not as visceral as the night in Kansas City back in 2014 when Brady was picked off twice and replaced by Jimmy Garoppolo in a 41-14 loss, but something feels off. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Bold and brave Root century puts England back in the driving seat

England’s risky sweeping strategy pays off in second TestEngland 290 & 324-9; Sri Lanka 336. England lead by 278 runsA brave and brilliant century by Joe Root has given England the chance of a famous victory in a compelling Test match in Kandy. The England captain’s innings was brave not because he was ever in any physical danger – no pace bowler propelled a ball at him until the 55th over – but because the conception of this knock and the approach of the entire England lineup was so unusually bold and risky.They swept and they scurried and they swept again. Their first seven batsmen were all out sweeping, which can easily prompt old-timers to rail against the modern way. Thus they risked severe censure from the wise men in the boxes if their strategy failed abysmally. It did not. They have scored 324 for nine on what is regarded as a Bunsen burner, seldom seen in England (except at Ciderabad). Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Ryan Giggs urges Wales to seal Nations League promotion and Euro 2020 boost

• Victory over Denmark would move Wales up to Group A • Win would also help chances of qualifying for Euro 2020Ryan Giggs has likened Friday night’s Nations League game against Denmark to a cup final and urged his players to secure the win that would put Wales within 180 minutes of qualifying for Euro 2020 and enable them to be “among the big boys” in Group A when this tournament starts again in two years’ time. Related: Nations League and international football: 10 things to look out for Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Croatia stun Spain to set up Nations League decider against England

• Tin Jedvaj’s stoppage-time winner gives Croatia 3-2 win• Wembley showdown will decide qualification and relegationTin Jedvaj scored a last-gasp winner to revive Croatia’s hopes of reaching the Nations League finals as Spain fell to a 3-2 defeat in Zagreb.The game was goalless until Andrej Kramaric tucked Ivan Perisic’s headed pass beyond David de Gea in the 54th minute. However, Spain responded immediately when Dani Ceballos recorded his first senior goal with a left-footed drive. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

The Fiver | Lovren v Ramos, bad looks and the sense of box office

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!During the Ethics World Cup, Dejan Lovren was the darling among those grubbing for a sentence, a word, a mere arching of the eyebrow from footballers as they traipsed past hacks taking urgent phone calls or struggling with a particularly troublesome earbud. Lovren would stand in front of the massed quote-seekers, shooting from the hip and giving the impression that he’d happily come along for a post-match loosener if there wasn’t a bus to catch. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Renault appoint Thierry Koskas as head of Formula 1 programme

Renault appoint Thierry Koskas as the head of their Formula 1 programme to replace Jerome Stoll from 1 January.

16-11-2018

Wayne Rooney on England, leaving the Premier League, and life in the US

Wayne Rooney talks to Football Focus about England, leaving the Premier League, and life in the US playing for DC United.

16-11-2018

RFU: Steve Brown resigns as chief executive after 14 months in charge

Steve Brown resigns as chief executive of the Rugby Football Union, after 14 months in the role.

16-11-2018

Sri Lanka v England: Joe Root's sublime 124 puts tourists on top

England captain Joe Root hits a sublime century to put his side in a strong position to win the series against Sri Lanka on day three of the second Test.

16-11-2018

VAR in the Premier League: How Charlie Austin MIGHT react

BBC Sport imagines how Southampton striker Charlie Austin might react to the news that VAR will be used in the Premier League from next season.

16-11-2018

$100 to not see games? The Warriors' 'In the Building' pass is Silicon Valley in ticket form

Golden State games will be sold out for the foreseeable future, but they’ve discovered a new way to sell the experience: offering fans passes that don’t include a view of the courtThey say things are expensive in the Bay Area, but this is officially out of hand. The Golden State Warriors are now charging $100 for the privilege to not actually attend games. OK, technically you can watch the court with the team’s new “In the Building Pass”, but only from the television sets in the club areas at Oracle Arena. In the long line of Silicon Valley “innovations” that are just expensive variations on things that already exist, the Warriors have essentially reinvented the concept of “going to a sports bar”.Here’s how the “offer” works: fans get the opportunity to pay $100 for the ability to get into the arena for every home game. That’s basically all they get. They do not get a seat and they don’t even get a chance to see the game in person. Instead they can watch the action unfold on the various televisions at Oracle and, if they want, enjoy some ridiculously priced food and drink at the various bars and restaurants within. Yes, those who have a (non-transferable) pass are eligible for promotional giveaways. No, the offer doesn’t extend to the postseason. Continue reading...

16-11-2018

Sri Lanka v England: Pick your England team for first Test

Who do you think should be in the England side for the first Test against Sri Lanka? Choose your XI and share it with your friends.

16-11-2018