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Nail-biting win for Harrington

Hong Kong: Ireland’s Padraig Harrington clinched a nail-biting one-shot victory at the Hong Kong Open with two birdies in the last two holes on Sunday. The world No.10 drew level with leader Hennie Otto of South Africa at the penultimate hole before snatching victory with a 20-foot putt at the last in the opening leg of the 2004 European Tour season.

“I got very aggressive at the 16th when I realised Otto was in front by one stroke. It was all or nothing at that stage,” said Harrington, who finished with a four-under-par 66 and an 11-under-par total of 269. He won $113,000.

Harrington became the first person to win successive opening events on the European Tour after winning the BMW Asian Open in Taiwan last year.

Klitschko warns Lewis

New York: Ukrainian heavyweight Vitali Klitschko stopped Canadian Kirk Johnson in the second round of their non-title bout at Madison Square Garden on Saturday. Klitschko, 32, who is seeking a rematch with WBC champion Lennox Lewis, sent a message to the Briton after knocking out Johnson twice in the second round before the fight was stopped with six seconds remaining. “I was 100 percent ready for the fight,” Klitschko said in a television interview. “Hello Lennox, I know you saw the fight.”

In front of 10,823 fans who braved the snow in New York, Klitschko fought like a man on a mission.

Defamation suit on Majola

Durban: After a recent spate of controversies, South African cricket was left to counter another when United Cricket Board of South Africa CEO Gerald Majola was slapped with a defamation suit. Majola, the first black supremo of South African cricket, is reported to have “bad-mouthed” a fellow council member and president of the Northern Cricket Union Brandon Foot during a meeting in Johannesburg last week.

According to newspaper reports on Sunday, Majola launched a “verbal assault” against Foot for allegedly leaking documents to the media relating to appointment of South Africa’s new manager of the national cricket team. The documents had information about five people interviewed to succeed Goolam Rajah as the manager. The job eventually went to Tim Southey.

New deal for Ferguson

London: Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson says he has reached agreement with the club on a new contract and expects to sign the deal “very soon”.

“My contract is with my lawyer now. He was at the (Aston) Villa game (a 4-0 win for United on Saturday) and we will now go through it together,” Ferguson told British newspapers on Sunday.

“It is all straightforward from this point because an agreement has been reached with the club on every single detail.

“I am very close to signing it. It will all be done and dusted very soon,” added Ferguson, 61, who underwent hospital treatment for an irregular heartbeat on Thursday.

Ferguson is one of the most successful managers in British soccer history, having guided United to eight Premier League titles in the last 11 seasons and the 1999 Champions League crown.

Ajay Sharma appeals ban

New Delhi: Tainted cricketer Ajay Sharma, serving a life ban on alleged match-fixing charges, has moved a Delhi Court seeking relief. Sharma, in his petition, has prayed to restrain the BCCI from preventing his participation in cricket matches and related activities.

Sport on Screen

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