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Carlos Alcaraz overcomes ‘struggle’ with De Jong to advance at French Open
There is a grand slam title on the line for whoever is prepared to ­perform at the highest level and seize his ­opportunities in one of the most open, uncertain men’s French Open draws in a long time.For Carlos Alcaraz, the third seed and one of the tournament favourites, this means there is much more work to do. Under the Philippe Chatrier roof, the Spaniard overcame a mid-match hiccup before moving through to reach the third round with an unconvincing 6-3, 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 win over Jesper de Jong, a Dutch qualifier.Alcaraz arrived here after a difficult period as he was sidelined by a forearm injury for much of the clay-court season. The 21-year-old withdrew from Monte Carlo and Barcelona before he exacerbated his injury while trying to retain his Madrid Open title last month
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Mark Wood admits England’s rainy T20 World Cup preparations ‘not ideal’

Mark Wood has admitted England’s preparations for the T20 World Cup have been “not ideal” after two of their first three warmup games against Pakistan were rained off. It leaves both sides heading into Thursday’s final encounter at the Oval – and transatlantic flights the following day – far from battle-honed.Before the 2022 tournament, held in Australia, England played a seven-match series in Pakistan, then three games against the hosts – one in Perth, also the venue of their first World Cup fixture – and a final warmup match, against Pakistan again. Fully grooved by an 11-game buildup, and having got their international travel out of the way early, they went on to win the trophy.But instead of using that as a ­template they have taken a different approach this time and will travel to the Caribbean having played, at best, two games as a team in five months

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Coe warns potential drug cheats at Olympics that they ‘will not sleep easily’

Sebastian Coe has admitted the Paris Olympics this summer will not be drug free, but his fervent hope is that they will be cleaner than previous games.Asked at the Hay Festival on Wednesday whether he thought the Games, which begin on 26 July, will be free from drugs controversy, the World Athletics president said that “the answer to that is, sadly, no”.“Human nature tells me that there will always be a few people, even with the right education programmes, and tough deterrents, that are going to make that risk-reward decision and step outside the moral boundaries.”However, he said that testing technology is improving, and “no athlete that thinks they’ve got away with it on one occasion can sleep easily”.Asked about potential protests over Israel’s inclusion in the Games, Coe said the security concerns would be “complicated”

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Karsten Warholm: ‘I’m the world’s biggest hypocrite over super spikes’

The 400m hurdles Olympic champion once criticised a rival over their footwear but has changed his mind before defending his titleKarsten Warholm doesn’t hold anything back. On the track. Off the track. It’s the same. Full send

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The Spin | ‘Land of opportunity’: USA is cricket’s bold new frontier once again

In the first of a series of special features, we look at how a sport buried by the American civil war is undergoing a revivalManhattan’s skyscrapers are built on cricket fields. There was one under Pier 17 at the Seaport on the East River, another beneath the North Meadow of Central Park, and a third right on 1st Avenue and East 32nd St, below the car park of NYU’s Langone Medical Center.In 1844, a crowd of about 5,000 New Yorkers watched the first international match there, between the USA and Canada. “Cricket was the first modern team sport in America,” says Chuck Ramkissoon, in Joseph O’Neill’s great New York novel Netherland, “a bona fide American pastime”. He’s right

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Bronx Zoo ‘90: the season the New York Yankees hit a chaotic low

The Yankees stumbled to a last-place finish at the dawn of the 90s. But a new series documents how things were even worse off the fieldChampionships, champagne and ticker-tape parades – that’s the story of New York Yankees baseball, right? Not if you were on the team in 1990.During that season, the team’s combustible owner, George Steinbrenner, was banned from baseball after connecting with gambler Howard Spira to discredit one of his own players, Dave Winfield. Outfielder Mel Hall brought two cougar cubs into the clubhouse and had a relationship with an underage high school student. On the field, the team was so bad that pitcher Andy Hawkins threw a no-hitter – and still lost