The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Vijai back home after 9 years

Natadola Harbour: Vijai Singh said he wants to build 'one hell of a golf course' and help bring an end to ethnic tensions in his native Fiji when he made his first visit to the Pacific nation in nine years.

Singh, the No. 2 ranked golfer in the world, said on Tuesday that he had accepted a Fiji government request to become a national goodwill ambassador and would meet Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase during the trip.

'It's good to be back,' said Singh, who now lives in Florida.

Natadola Bay is the future site of a new golf course that Singh will help develop.

Asian rowing in Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Top sailors from over 22 countries are expected to participate in the 11th Asian rowing championships to be held here from October 18 to 23.

As many as 18 events will be held in eight boat classes for both men and women and all races will be rowed on a six lane marked course, K.P. Singh Deo, president of the Indian Rowing Federation said on Wednesday. The event will be held at the picturesque Hussain Sagar Lake.

The Indian team is already training in Hyderabad. India ranked second among Asian countries in many of the events.

Real to fete Hierro

Madrid: Real Madrid will honour their former Spain defender Fernando Hierro in a ceremony at the Bernabeu on Saturday before the city derby against Atletico Madrid. The 37-year-old, who played last season with Premier League side Bolton Wanderers, announced his decision to retire at the beginning of May.

Hierro made a record 89 international appearances as an outfield player for Spain and spent 14 years at Real Madrid after joining the club from Valladolid in 1989. He went on to help Real win five Spanish league titles and three European Cups before he was discarded, along with coach Vicente del Bosque, a day after the club won the league title in June 2003.

After leaving Real he spent a season with Al Rayyan in Quatar before joining Bolton.

Spartak boss' denial

Moscow: Former Spartak president Andrei Chervichenko has denied allegations of widespread doping in the Moscow club in 2003.

Russian media reported last month that Spartak were involved in systematic doping two years ago and that the country's soccer authorities knew about it and tried to conceal the problem.

'I'm tired of hearing that Spartak under my control was an evil empire,' said Chervichenko, who ran the club for five years until he was pushed out last year.

'They keep bringing these doping allegations and just throw everything into one heap: tax evasion, criminal cases, money laundering... It's like I'm the only one guilty of all these things, as if they didn't exist long before I came to the club. I'm surprised that I haven't been accused of cold-blooded murder yet.'

Spartak captain Yegor Titov received a one-year ban by Uefa in January 2004 after testing positive for bromantan.

Jonny in Lions team

London: England fly-half Jonny Wilkinson has been included in the British and Irish Lions team to play Argentina at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff next Monday. The game, a warm-up for the tour of New Zealand, will be the first international for Wilkinson since he dropped the winning goal in the 2003 World Cup final.

n Cricket, WI vs Pak: First ODI, h/ls from 7.30 pm on TEN Sports n Soccer, Premier League: Liverpool vs Aston Villa (repeat) from noon on STAR Sports n Soccer, Uefa Cup final: Sporting vs CSKA Moscow (repeat) from noon on ESPN

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