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Gary Ballance faces another test of his technique on England recall

Yorkshire batsman will face some high-class Pakistan’s seamers while Joe Root’s move to No3 bears all the influence of Trevor BaylissWe have been blindsided. Jimmy Anderson is not fit for the first Test and Ben Stokes not chosen as a frontline batsman for England’s first Test against Pakistan next Thursday. The stuff about Jos Buttler was a red herring and Scott Borthwick got his runs at the wrong time, unlike Gary Ballance, who made his first hundred of the home season against Middlesex this week in front of Andrew Strauss. James Whitaker, the national selector, has always been an admirer. Timing is everything.Ballance has been named in a 12-man squad, along with the Middlesex paceman Toby Roland-Jones, one of those against whom Ballance made his recent runs. Alastair Cook has confirmed that Ballance will not bat at three, where he has made his four Test hundreds, the spot instead going to Joe Root, just as it ought to. That will be the influence of Trevor Bayliss. Continue reading...

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Inside the BBC at Wimbledon – a photo essay

The BBC and the All England Lawn Tennis Club have the longest partnership in sports broadcasting history – stretching back to 1937. Photographer Tom Jenkins was given unprecented access to the mammoth broadcast operation that brings the tournament to a global audience of over 1 billion people Continue reading...

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Milos Raonic thinks up a plan for Wimbledon revenge over Roger Federer

The Canadian lost to Federer in straight sets in the 2014 semi-finals but with the help of John McEnroe is plotting a route to his first grand slam finalEveryone in the players’ area was cheering on Roger Federer when the king of Centre Court mounted his regal comeback from two sets down against Marin Cilic on Wednesday. Everyone, that is, apart from Milos Raonic. He refused to be swept away by the romance of Federer’s victory and it was not out of support for Cilic, even though he has a closer relationship with the Croat.Instead Raonic watched the television in a transfixed state, studying the match, the trends, searching for any potential signs of weakness that he can exploit when he meets Federer in a repeat of their 2014 semi-final, which the Swiss won in three routine sets. Continue reading...

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Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg not subject to team orders, say Mercedes

• Drivers free to race each other for rest of Formula One season • Hamilton won Austrian Grand Prix after colliding with RosbergLewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg are free to race for the rest of the Formula One season and will not be subject to team orders, Mercedes has announced. Related: Lewis Hamilton wins Austrian Grand Prix after crash with Nico Rosberg Continue reading...

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‘José Mourinho gave me my opportunity. I fell short of being good enough’

Steven Watt was on the list of 55 players Mourinho produced to show he gives youth a chance. The defender was given only 92 minutes of action at Chelsea but says Manchester United’s starlets will get game time if they are up to the markSteven Watt knew his phone was going to ring at some point this week. As soon as José Mourinho, in anticipation of the inevitable question at his first press conference as Manchester United manager, produced a list featuring Watt and all the other young players he has apparently nurtured from the nest, someone was bound to ask. Related: José Mourinho’s list of the youngsters he gave a debut to – fact or fiction? Continue reading...

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Serena Williams easily beats Elena Vesnina to reach Wimbledon final

• Williams defeats Russian 6-2, 6-0 in 48 minutes in Centre Court semi-final • Champion to face either Venus Williams or Angelique Kerber in finalSerena Williams did not so much stroll into the Wimbledon final as dawdle past poor Elena Vesnina in 48 embarrassing minutes. Centre Court has not seen anything so one-sided in a very long time. The Duchess of Cambridge, who smiled throughout from the Royal Box, spent longer talking to the ballkids beforehand.If the patrons had a sliver of meanness about them (they don’t), they might have been tempted to start murmuring their discontent after five minutes of this first semi-final on a warm and otherwise pleasant Thursday afternoon. Instead they opened the champagne, the sound of popping corks punctuating the silences for as long as it lasted. Continue reading...

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Chris Coleman praises Wales team after Euro 2016 defeat by Portugal – video

After losing the semi-final of the Euro 2016 against Portugal 2-0 at the Stade des Lumières in Lyon on Wednesday, Wales manager Chris Coleman speaks at a press conference and praises the team’s effort suggesting he’s aware ‘of the sacrifices they had to make’ to get to this stage of the tournamentTears and pride in Cardiff as Welsh team bow out of Euro 2016 Continue reading...

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Venus Williams v Angelique Kerber: Wimbledon 2016 semi-final – live!

American aiming to make first grand slam final since 2009Email bryan.graham@theguardian.com or tweet @BryanAGraham 1.55pm BST Bryan will be here shortly, in the meantime here’s how she got on in her previous match:It is 19 years since Venus Williams first played at Wimbledon, an opening step on the path to what has been an incredible career. Almost two decades on, the 36-year-old is back in the semi-finals here for the first time in seven years, an achievement which in many ways is every bit as good as any of the five titles she has pocketed here along the way.The American’s 7-6, 6-2 victory over Yaroslava Shvedova, of Kazakhstan, put her into the last four of a grand slam for the first time since 2010 and at 36, she is the oldest woman to make the last four here since a 37-year-old Martina Navratilova in 1994. Given the hurdles she has had to overcome to get here, this one must feel all the sweeter. Continue reading...

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Serena Williams cruises past Elena Vesnina and into Wimbledon final – as it happened

The defending champion required just 48 minutes to despatch the unseeded Russian 6-2, 6-0 and book her place in a ninth Wimbledon final 2.04pm BST So Serena Williams is into her ninth Wimbledon final and she’s one win away from her 22nd grand slam title. There was no doubt about this one. Elena Vesnina was no match for the world No1. But who will be waiting for her in Saturday’s final? Her older sister? Or her conqueror in the Australian Open final? Why not find out with Bryan Armen Graham’s coverage of Venus Williams versus Angelique Kerber. Thanks for reading. Bye. Related: Venus Williams v Angelique Kerber: Wimbledon 2016 semi-final – live! 2.00pm BST Serving for the match and a place in the final, Williams moves into a 30-0 lead thanks to a lovely backhand volley. I’m sure Vesnina is looking forward to facing Serena in the doubles later. An 11th ace brings up three match points. A smash seals the win. After 48 minutes, it’s all over. They embrace at the net. Vesnina smiles graciously. She might as well. What else could she have done? Continue reading...

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Serena Williams v Elena Vesnina: Wimbledon 2016 semi-final – live!

Wimbledon women’s singles semi-finals latest from Centre CourtThe Williams phenomenon: Venus and Serena roll back the yearsWimbledon 2016: Order of play for Thursday 7 JulyEmail jacob.steinberg@theguardian.com or tweet @JacobSteinberg 1.39pm BST Serving for the first set, Williams moves into a 30-0 lead with a precise backhand down the line. She’s on it today. It’s not that Vesnina’s playing badly – she’s just not being allowed to play. Williams earns three set points and takes the first with an ace down the middle. 1.36pm BST First set: Williams 5-2 Vesnina* (*denotes server): Vesnina holds to 15. Williams will have to serve for the match. Continue reading...

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