Froome beats Contador in 17th stage time trial

Britain's Chris Froome tightened his grip on the Tour de France yellow jersey after beating Spanish rival Alberto Contador in the 17th stage time trial on Wednesday.

Froome, taking his third stage win of the 100th edition, finished the hilly 32 km race against the clock in a time of 51min 33sec to beat former two-time champion Contador by nine seconds. Contador's efforts moved him up to second place overall at the expense of Dutchman Bauke Mollema but the Saxo team leader saw his deficit go from 4:25 to 4:34 a day ahead of a crucial 18th stage in the Alps.AFP

Carter injury deals Jamaica fresh blow

Jamaican sprinter Nesta Carter, the second fastest man over 100m this year, pulled out of Wednesday's meet at Lucerne because of a thigh injury, organisers said.

Last Saturday, he clocked 9.87sec in Madrid, the second fastest time over 100m this year behind the 9.75sec of America's Tyson Gay. Gay has since failed a drugs test as has Carter's compatriot Asafa Powell.

Fellow Jamaican, Yohan Blake has already pulled out of next month's world championships with a hamstring injury.AFP

Indian team for Junior TT Championships announced

Paddler Manika Batra will lead the Indian girls team in the South Asian Junior Table Tennis Championships while the boys’ challenge will be spearheaded by national champion Abhishek Yadav in the regional tournament to be played here from July 20-22.

The championships will be played in two categories — junior and sub-junior. Six nations — Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, India and Bhutan — will be participating in the tournament.PTI

IBL players’ auction postponed again

The players’ auction of the Indian Badminton League (IBL) has been postponed to July 22 after team owners requested for a two-day workshop to prepare for the bidding. The auction was originally set for June 30 here but later re-scheduled for Friday.

A consortium involving former cricket captain Sunil Gavaskar and Telugu actor Nagarjuna have bought the Mumbai franchise of the IBL. The consortium also includes former manager of the Indian cricket team and businessman Vankina Chamundeswaranath. The team will be called Mumbai Masters.

PTI

India need a separate defence coach: Dilip Tirkey

Former captain Dilip Tirkey reckons that demands of modern hockey are such that Indian hockey team requires a separate defence coach.

“Defence is very important in modern hockey and I have seen lapses in the past few tournaments... ” Tirkey said. “I think India need a defence coach. Chief coach can not handle everything. Modern hockey is very different as tackling is not easy now. A defence expert can teach them technical things like positioning, tackling, re-tackling, footwork, marking in a better way,” the veteran, who was said.PTI

Murray confirmed for Thailand Open

Newly-rowned Wimbledon champion Andy Murray will compete in the Thailand Open in September, along with two other men ranked in the Wrld’s top 10.

Joining Murray will be No.6-anked Tomas Berdych and defending Thailand Open champion Richard Gasquet, ranked 9th. Organizers of the Sept. 21-9 tournament confirmed Thursday that No. 13 Milos Raonic and popular Russian Mikhail Youzhny will also take part.AP