'Nothing to lose', says Nicol David

GOLD COAST - Malaysia's squash superstar Nicol David said Sunday the "pressure is off" as she bids for a third straight gold medal at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. The eight-time world champion, 34, currently ranked sixth in the world, is lining up for her sixth Commonwealth Games, but for the first time since Manchester 2002 she is not the tournament top seed. "I've got nothing to lose," David said. "I want to start strong and see how far I go. "The depth of the game is so strong. It's anyone's competition, anyone in the top 10 could win. "The gold medals I have are very close to my heart and that is spurring me on." David spent a record 108 consecutive months (2006-2015) on top of the women's world rankings and amassed an incredible 56-match unbeaten run in 2009.–AFP



Skye guns glory for her late brother

GOLD COAST - Australian boxer Skye Nicolson is gunning for Commonwealth Games glory in memory of her late brother, a professional fighter who died before she was born -- and says his spirit will be cheering her on. Jamie Nicolson was a highly rated Olympic and then professional boxer who was killed in a car crash in 1994 along with another brother, the younger Gavin, as they headed to boxing training. Skye was born a year after the tragedy, and has inherited the fighting genes which run through the family. Ahead of Wednesday's opening of the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast -- close to where the Nicolsons hail from -- she described Jamie as her inspiration. "I have a pretty tight relationship with him, even though we've never met," she said. "I definitely think he is in my corner with me when I fight."–AFP



Monger claims podium finish on return

LONDON - Teenage racing driver Billy Monger claimed a podium finish on his return to racing Saturday, less than a year after having both legs amputated in a horror crash. He finished the race at Oulton Park in north-west England in third place on his first appearance since undergoing a double amputation when he crashed into a stationary car during a Formula Four race at Donington Park in April, 2017. "It's a bit surreal but an awesome feeling, even just to be back racing," said Monger. "If you had told me that I'd have been on the podium first race of the year, I would probably have said you were lying to me! It was awesome to be out there and prove I'm competitive is more than I could have ever have asked for." Monger's plight last provoked an outpouring of generosity from the motor racing world.–AFP



Laporte urges City to take title chance

LONDON - Aymeric Laporte has urged Manchester City to take their "once in a lifetime" opportunity to wrap up the Premier League title by beating arch rivals Manchester United next weekend. Pep Guardiola's runaway leaders need three points to ensure they are crowned champions after cruising to a 3-1 win at Everton on Saturday. That gives City a chance to enjoy a title party at United's expense when Jose Mourinho's men visit Eastlands on Saturday. The Manchester derby comes between two Champions League quarter-final clashes against Liverpool and City manager Pep Guardiola has stressed that Wednesday's first leg at Anfield is his immediate priority. Yet the prospect of celebrating the title against United is a dream scenario for City supporters and Laporte wants to make their wish come true.–AFP



PSA allocates more int’l events to PSF

ISLAMABAD – Professional Squash Association (PSA) has authorised Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) to host more high-prize international squash tournaments for men and women. After conducting CAS International women and Pakistan Open men events December last year at Islamabad, the PSF is keen to host more international events of $5,000 to $70,000 at Islamabad, Karachi and Lahore. The PSA conducted a comprehensive security survey of Karachi and Lahore on March 12 and 15 respectively and as a result, they have authorised the PSF for hosting more men & women events in all the three cities with participation of foreign players. The PSF has asked the provincial associations and its affiliated members to generate sponsorship for holding high-prize events so that Pakistani players may improve their international ranking.–Staff Reporter