Jamie Vardy: ‘From a relegation scrap to lifting the trophy – IT’S UNBELIEVABLE’

first_imgJamie Vardy was left stunned as Leicester City became the first new top-flight champions in 38 years by clinching the Premier League title on Monday.The trophy will be heading to the King Power Stadium after rivals Tottenham could only draw against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.It means the Foxes are champions with two games still to play, with the team set to lift the silverware after Saturday’s home meeting with Everton, where Vardy will be back in action after sitting out a ban.It’s been a fairy-tale ride for the 29-year-old, who began his senior career at Stocksbridge Park Steels after being rejected by Sheffield Wednesday as a teenager and was playing non-league football for Fleetwood as recently as 2012.He has gone on to score 24 goals for club and country this season and claimed the Football Writers’ Association player of the year award on Sunday.But the title has capped a remarkable campaign and his rise to international fame.“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” said Vardy. “I’ve never known anything like it. We were scrapping to stay in the league last season and on Saturday we’ll be lifting the trophy.“That gives you an idea of how much hard work has gone into this season from every single player and member of staff.“It’s the biggest achievement in the history of a great club and we all feel privileged to be part of it.“It’s even more special to have done it with these lads. Every minute of hard work we’ve put in on the training pitch has been worth it for this moment.”Leicester have gone to Manchester City and Tottenham and won, while an unbeaten run since mid-February proved beyond any doubt Ranieri’s side had the nerve to finish the job.Midfielder Andy King, who has spent his entire career with Leicester, admits the size of the achievement could take some time to sink in.“I thought I’d seen everything with this club, but I never thought I’d see this,” said the 27-year-old. “It’s difficult to put into words. The players deserve it, the gaffer and the staff deserve it, and the fans deserve it. It’s been an unbelievable season.” 1 Jamie Vardy has netted 24 goals for club and country this season last_img read more

South Korean Hyeon Cheng beats Alcaraz Ivorra of Spain, wins Junior ITF II

first_imgSouth Korean Hyeon Cheng’s appearance does not betray that he can hit the ball that hard. So it made for some exciting moments when he made the tall Albert Alcaraz Ivorra of Spain run around during the final of the Junior ITF II in New Delhi on Thursday.Cheng displayed his court craft to perfection as he defeated Ivorra 6-7( 0), 7-7, 6-4 in a gruelling final to win the junior boys’ category. Unlike Cheng, third seeded Oleksandra Korashirli of Ukraine had an easy outing as she thrashed seventh seed Michelle Werbrouck of Belgium 6-2, 6-2 to claim the girls’ title.The boy’s final was an intense affair as none of the players were ready to concede an inch. Ivarro’s booming strokes and strong forehand were challenged by Cheng’s powerful serves.The Spaniard got the first break in the seventh game and took a 4-3 lead. Ivarro then broke Cheng in the 10th game, but the Korean fought his way back. He came up with some beautiful drop shots and levelled the score at 6-6. Ivarro recollected his game and pushed him to the limits in the tie- breaker as the Korean couldn’t score a single point and lost the set.Ivarro maintained the momentum and broke Cheng in the first game of the second set. The Korean, however, stepped up his game and broke back in the 8th and 12th game to draw level.The third set saw the two raise the bar. Ivarro dominated the set with his big serves but Cheng stretched him to the flanks with his angles, forcing the Spaniard to play on his back hand. His strategy paid dividends as the temperamental Ivarro appeared to lose his focus and screamed at his errors.advertisementIt cost Ivarro as he was broken in the 10th game. His strokes lacked the sting and Cheng cashed on it. The Spaniard doubled faulted and Cheng scored on a cross- court forehand. Ivarro double faulted again and Cheng sailed through. “My opponent was tough as he was serving fast and had an equally effective forehand. I made to play him on the back hand and I was successful in my strategy,” said Cheng, who will next play in Kolkata.last_img read more

Tri-series: David Warner fine with vice-captaincy

first_imgDavid Warner was named Australia vice-captain for the tri-series, and thus, when Michael Clarke was ruled out of Friday’s match against Sri Lanka, he would have expected to be named captain.But instead, the national selection panel decided to go for the vast experience of Ricky Ponting, since they were bent on ‘resting’ Test vice- captain Brad Haddin, and didn’t consider Warner experienced enough for the job.On Wednesday, Warner himself stated that the move was fine with him. “Obviously, appointing Ricky as captain is due to his experience and that’s an opportunity for me to be under him as well and he’s led the country for many years so I’m looking forward to being his vice (captain),” Warner said on Wednesday.”I’m just actually happy I’m playing another one-day game for Australia, that’s the main thing. Obviously, I haven’t had a great start to the one-day series… as selectors have noted they don’t want to put any extra pressure on myself and I agree with that.”Chairman of selectors John Inverarity claimed that Warner was not ready for the top job yet. “David Warner is a young player making his way. He displays considerable leadership potential, but the selection panel is of the view that he should not, at this moment, have the added responsibility of captaincy thrust on him. David has been gaining valuable experience under Michael Clarke’s captaincy and now he will have the opportunity to grow his leadership skills further as vice-captain to Ricky Ponting.”The selectors drew flak from legendary Australia skipper Steve Waugh, who slammed the decision to revert the captaincy to Ponting. “If David Warner is in there as vice-captain, I assume they think he’s leadership material and if he’s vice-captain why can’t he captain the side as well?,” Waugh was quoted as saying by the Australian media. “Ricky will do it blindfolded but the future is probably David Warner, so I’m surprised they didn’t go to Warner.”advertisementThis is the second time in a month that Warner has been overlooked for the top job, despite being tagged as the future Australia captain. Uncapped Tasmanian George Bailey was appointed to lead the Twenty20 team in the two internationals against India.While Waugh may not understand the decision, another former Test skipper, Kim Hughes, says it was right not to give the captaincy to Warner.”As far as establishing himself as a consistent player, he’s a long, long way away from that,” Hughes told Melbourne radio station SEN .”He’s intuitive, brilliant in the field, but I just think the last thing he needs is too many burdens. At this stage Warner is still coming to grips with what he needs to be to become a great player, which we all hope he will be, and that’s consistency.”last_img read more